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Monsieur Loyal, Tartuffe by Edmond Geffroy

Monsieur Loyal, Le Tartuffe by Edmond Geffroy (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Allow me a short post.

Edmond Geffroy‘s FR was an actor and a sociétaire, one of the shareholders, of the Comédie-Française. But he was also an artist and the painting above is a watercolour portrait of an actor who played the role of Monsieur Loyal, the bailiff in Molière’s Tartuffe. I believe it has been auctioned off by Drouot.com, in Paris.

If we look at other paintings of Molière’s characters, a few appear to be by Edmond Geoffroy. They are signed, but the signature is difficult to read. However, the ‘G’ in the portrait of Monsieur Loyal resembles the ‘G’ of other portraits of Molière’s characters: the portrait of Tartuffes (1664), that of Alceste, the protagonist in Molière’s The Misanthrope (1666), Monsieur Jourdain, the Bourgeois gentilhomme (1670), and other characters inhabiting Molière’s theatrical world.

About Edmond Geffroy 

Edmond Geffroy (1804 – 1895) entered his career at the Comédie-Française in 1829. He married Eulalie Dupuis, whose mother, Rose Dupuis, was a sociétaire de la Comédie-Française, or a shareholder.

Geoffroy was a successful actor who was named the 254th shareholder of the Comédie-Française in 1835. He was Dean of the shareholders between 1862 and 1865. He retired as sociétaire in 1865. Edmond Geffroy created the role of Chatterton, Alfred de Vigny‘s Romantic hero, with Marie Dorval as Kitty Bell.


Scène de Chatterton, Lithographie de Jacques Arago  (Photo credit: Larousse)

As an artist, Geffroy apprenticed at Amaury-Duval‘s atelier. He showed paintings at the Salon de Paris from 1829 until 1863 and, in 1841, he was awarded two medals: a second-place and a third-place medal.

Some of his portraits depict groups. But between 1851 and 1863, he made portraits of his colleagues, individual actors mainly, wearing either civilian clothes or the costume they had worn performing their favourite role. Eight of his paintings hang in the foyer of the Comédie-Française.

Edmond Geffroy also executed history paintings and depictions of religious scenes.

After his death, a retrospective exhibition of is art took place in at Maignelet, his birthplace, and Beauvais. Geffroy died at Saint-Pierre-lès-Nemours.

In 1995, a catalogue of his paintings was compiled by the Musée départemental de l’Oise.

I will now finish a post on Tartuffe.


Sources and Resources

Love to everyone


Edmond Geffroy (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

© Micheline Walker
10 May 2016