Paul Ranson was a French painter, well-known as the founder of the ‘Les Nabis’, a group of artists who developed impressionism and pioneered the abstract art movement in Paris. The name of the group, Nabis, literally meaning ‘prophets’, demonstrates their ambition to create revolutionary art of the next generation for the ever-modernising world.
Hugely influenced by Paul Gauguin and Paul Cézanne, paintings by Ranson and his Nabis fellow artists were situated with bright colours and delicate outlines. Ranson also hosted meetings of the loosely connected Nabis group in his own studio, sharing their distinctive styles and ideas. Although Ranson’s early works and artistic career were intertwined with the decorative arts (Art Nouveau) and Japanese prints, his commitment to symbolism gave his works a mysterious beauty.
His prints were published as part of the most prestigious L’Estampe originale (1893 - 1895) alongside other most established illustrators including Henri de Toulouse-Lautrec and other Nabis artists. It was not only the demonstration of the emergence of printing as a brand new medium for art, but also an eyewitness of the convergence of different art movements and cultures.