The Artist Birthday Series

Henri-Edmond Cross

Today’s Artist Birthday: Henri-Edmond Cross

Henri-Edmond Cross, born Henri-Edmond-Joseph Delacroix (20 May 1856 – 16 May 1910), was a French painter and printmaker. He is most acclaimed as a master of Neo-Impressionism, and he played an important role in shaping the second phase of that movement. He was very influential to Henri Matisse and many other artists, and his work was an instrumental influence in the development of Fauvism.

cross self portrait
Henri Edmond Cross, Self Portrait, 18

Henri-Edmond-Joseph Delacroix was born in Douai, a commune in the Nord département in northern France, on 20 May 1856. He had no surviving siblings. His parents, with a family history of ironmongery, were French adventurer Alcide Delacroix and British Fanny Woollett.

In 1865 the family moved near Lille, a northern French city close to the Belgian border. His father’s cousin, Dr. Auguste Soins, recognized Henri’s artistic talent and was very supportive of his artistic inclinations, even financing the boy’s first drawing instructions under painter Carolus-Duran the following year. Henri was Duran’s protégé for a year. His studies continued  in Paris from 1875 to 1881.

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