Paul Sérusier  

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Kunstformen der Natur (1904) by Ernst Haeckel
Kunstformen der Natur (1904) by Ernst Haeckel
"How do you see these trees? They are yellow. So, put in yellow; this shadow, rather blue, paint it with pure ultramarine; these red leaves? Put in vermilion." --Paul Gauguin to Paul Sérusier

Paul Sérusier (1864–1927) was a French painter who was a pioneer of abstract art and an inspiration for the avant-garde Nabi movement.


He studied at the Académie Julian and was a monitor there in the mid 1880s. In the summer of 1888 he travelled to Pont-Aven and joined the small group of artists centered there around Paul Gauguin. While at the Pont-Aven artist's colony he painted a picture that became known as The Talisman, under the close supervision of Gauguin. The picture was an extreme exercise in Cloisonnism that approximated to pure abstraction. He was a Post-Impressionist painter, a part of the group of painters called Les Nabis. Sérusier along with Paul Gauguin named the group. Pierre Bonnard, Edouard Vuillard and Maurice Denis became the best known of the group, but at the time they were somewhat peripheral to the core group.

He later taught at the Académie Ranson and published his book ABC de la peinture in 1921.


  • ABC de la peinture, La Douce France & Henri Floury, Paris 1921
- Second edition, accompanied by a study on Sérusier's life and work, by Maurice Denis, Librairie Floury, Paris 1942
- Third edition, accompanied by an unpublished correspondence, collected by Madame P. Sérusier and annotated by Mademoiselle H. Boutaric, Librairie Floury, Paris 1950

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