Bernard Buffet (1928-1999)

Bernard Buffet was a French Expressionist painter.

Buffet started drawing around age 10 and studied at the Ecole des Beaux-Arts in Paris. Highly precocious, he had his first solo show in Paris in 1947 and in 1948, at age 20, was awarded the Prix de la Critique jointly with an older painter, Bernard Lorjou.

Best known for his representational work, Buffet's paintings are often figurative, graphic, and central in their compositions. A bold rejecter of abstract art altogether, Buffet was a member of the anti-abstraction group L'homme Témoin, or the Witness-Man, which passionately argued for the importance of representational art at a time when abstraction began to dominate the critical conversation. His barren landscapes, harsh still lifes, gaunt religious scenes and sad circus clowns brought him early fame and fortune but little enduring critical esteem.