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Paul Cornoyer (American, 1864-1923)


Paul Cornoyer is best known for his elegant and atmospheric paintings of turn-of-the-century New York. Born in Saint Louis, Cornoyer began his artistic education at the Saint Louis School of Art, painting in the Barbizon style then in vogue. By 1889 he had saved enough money to study in Paris, where he attended the Académie Julian under Jules-Joseph Lefebvre, Louis Blanc, and Benjamin Constant. Like many students of Constant and Lefebvre, Cornoyer adopted elements of a Tonalist style, but the Impressionists, and later the Ash Can School, also influenced him, especially in his preference for urban scenes. He returned to Saint Louis in 1894 but moved to New York in 1898 at the encouragement of William Merritt Chase. There Cornoyer associated with the leading artists of the day, including Thomas Wilmer Dewing, John Henry Twachtman, Julian Alden Weir, and Childe Hassam, and made his reputation as a painter of the city's fashionable districts.

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