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Alexandre Cabanel Self Portrait
French, 1823-1889

The Quintessence of L’art Pompier

Alexandre Cabanel’s name may not echo as loudly as some of his contemporaries in the annals of art history, but his influence and mastery are undeniable. Born in Montpellier, France, in 1823, Cabanel rose to prominence during the Second French Empire, a period marked by a taste for grandeur and extravagance, which is perfectly encapsulated in the style known as L’art pompier.

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