Muses

Christian Berard (1902 - 1949)

The son of a Parisian architect, Christian Bérard studies from 1920 at the Académie Ranson under the authority of Nabi painters such as Maurice Denis and Edouard Vuillard. Fascinated by Italian Gothic paintings, he sets himself up as a critic of the modernist movement, alongside Léonide and Eugène Berman, Pavel Tchelitchev as well as Francis Rose with whom he sets the standards for a poetic aesthetic entitled 'neo-humanist'. In the early 1930s, he collaborates with Jean Cocteau who introduced him to stage and costume design, therefore working with such figures as Serge Lifar, Louis Jouvet and Jean-Louis Barrault- his most iconic creation being the enchanted designs of Jean Cocteau's film, La Belle et la Bête, in 1946. Incarnating with his lover, Boris Kochno, at the head of the Ballets Russes and the co-founder of the Ballet des Champs Elysées, a modern and sulfurous openly homosexual couple, Christian Bérard also delighted the fashion crowd whom he inspired with his eccentric outfits and for whom he imagined delightful illustrations. The prince of Parisian nightlife, the artist was called Bébé by his friends who celebrated his kindness and his chubby features before he dramatically died on the stage of the Théatre Marigny just after having cried 'it's over'.

Tags / Christian Berard - French Artist - Illustration - Stage - Design - It Men - Muses - 1930s
Christian Bérard, sketches for sets for Jean Cocteau's La Belle et la Bête, chalk and gouache on black paper, 1946, private collection.
Christian Bérard, sketches for sets for Jean Cocteau's La Belle et la Bête, chalk and gouache on black paper, 1946, private collection.
Christian Bérard, sketches for sets for Jean Cocteau's La Belle et la Bête, chalk and gouache on black paper, 1946, private collection.
Christian Bérard, sketches for sets for Jean Cocteau's La Belle et la Bête, chalk and gouache on black paper, 1946, private collection.
Christian Bérard, Studio at Fourques, 1940
Christian Bérard, Studio at Fourques, 1940
Christian Dior, 1940's
Christian Dior, 1940's
Christian Bérard, Program for Le Théàtre de la Mode, 1945
Christian Bérard, Program for Le Théàtre de la Mode, 1945
Christian Bérard, illustration for score by George Auric, gouache on paper, 1935
Christian Bérard, illustration for score by George Auric, gouache on paper, 1935
Christian Bérard, poster for The Ballets des Champs Elysées
Christian Bérard, poster for The Ballets des Champs Elysées
Christian Bérard, Sketch for an illustration of Gigi by Colette
Christian Bérard, Sketch for an illustration of Gigi by Colette
Christian Bérard, Sketch for an illustration of Gigi by Colette
Christian Bérard, Sketch for an illustration of Gigi by Colette
Christian Bérard, Horst P.Horst, 1933/34, oil on canvas, Private collection, New York
Christian Bérard, Horst P.Horst, 1933/34, oil on canvas, Private collection, New York
Christian Bérard, Jean Cocteau, 1928, Oil on canvas, Museum of Modern Art, New  York
Christian Bérard, Jean Cocteau, 1928, Oil on canvas, Museum of Modern Art, New York
Christian Bérard by George Hoyningen-Huene 1932
Christian Bérard by George Hoyningen-Huene 1932
Christian Bérard, Emilio Terry, 1931, oil on canvas, private collection, Paris
Christian Bérard, Emilio Terry, 1931, oil on canvas, private collection, Paris
Christian Bérard, Boris Kochno, 1930, oil on cardboard, Boris Kochno collection , Paris
Christian Bérard, Boris Kochno, 1930, oil on cardboard, Boris Kochno collection , Paris
Christian Bérard, Madame L, 1947, oil on canvas, Private Collection
Christian Bérard, Madame L, 1947, oil on canvas, Private Collection
Christian Bérard, set for Margot, 1935, Margot's room at the Louvre, Act II, Scène 1, Gouache on paper.
Christian Bérard, set for Margot, 1935, Margot's room at the Louvre, Act II, Scène 1, Gouache on paper.
Christian Bérard, Oedipus and the Sphinx, 1932, Mural for a Jean Cocteau's flat, Paris
Christian Bérard, Oedipus and the Sphinx, 1932, Mural for a Jean Cocteau's flat, Paris
Christian Bérard, Self-Portrait, 1948, oil on canvas, Private Collection, Paris.
Christian Bérard, Self-Portrait, 1948, oil on canvas, Private Collection, Paris.
 Christian Bérard by Cecil Beaton, 1937 © Cecil Beaton Studio Archive, Sotheby's London
Christian Bérard by Cecil Beaton, 1937 © Cecil Beaton Studio Archive, Sotheby's London
Christian Bérard by Louise Dahl-Wolfe, 1949 © Louise Dahl-Wolfe
Christian Bérard by Louise Dahl-Wolfe, 1949 © Louise Dahl-Wolfe
Christian Bérard by Dmitri Kessel 1948 © LIFE
Christian Bérard by Dmitri Kessel 1948 © LIFE
Christian Bérard at work on costumes for Jean Cocteau's film
Christian Bérard at work on costumes for Jean Cocteau's film "Les Parents Terribles." with Josette Day, 1948, photo by Dmitri Kessel 1948, © LIFE
Christian Bérard at work on costumes for Jean Cocteau's film
Christian Bérard at work on costumes for Jean Cocteau's film "Les Parents Terribles." with Josette Day, 1948, photo by Dmitri Kessel 1948, © LIFE
Christian Bérard and Christian Dior  at Milly  1940s
Christian Bérard and Christian Dior at Milly 1940s
Christian Bérard, Christian Dior, French Vogue, Juin 1947
Christian Bérard, Christian Dior, French Vogue, Juin 1947
Christian Bérard, American Vogue,, December 1935
Christian Bérard, American Vogue,, December 1935
Christian Bérard by Henri Cartier-Bresson 1946
Christian Bérard by Henri Cartier-Bresson 1946
Christian Bérard, First Hotel, Paris, Henri Cartier-Bresson 1932
Christian Bérard, First Hotel, Paris, Henri Cartier-Bresson 1932
Christian Bérard, design for a Full^lenght White Evening Dress, show in two Views,brush and ink and watercolor on gray wove paper, 1940's
Christian Bérard, design for a Full^lenght White Evening Dress, show in two Views,brush and ink and watercolor on gray wove paper, 1940's
Christian Bérard 1940's
Christian Bérard 1940's
 Christian Bérard, drawn for Coco Chanel  1930's
Christian Bérard, drawn for Coco Chanel 1930's
Christian Bérard (décorateur), Boris Kochno (librettiste), René Blüm, Colonel de Basil, Sergeï Grigoriev (répétiteur), George Balanchine, Cotillon, 1932
Christian Bérard (décorateur), Boris Kochno (librettiste), René Blüm, Colonel de Basil, Sergeï Grigoriev (répétiteur), George Balanchine, Cotillon, 1932
Richard Avedon, Christian Bérard and Renée, suit by Dior, Paris, August 1947
Richard Avedon, Christian Bérard and Renée, suit by Dior, Paris, August 1947
Christian Bérard by Cecil Beaton, November 1944 © Cecil Beaton Studio Archive, Sotheby's London
Christian Bérard by Cecil Beaton, November 1944 © Cecil Beaton Studio Archive, Sotheby's London
Christian Bérard, illustration, 1935
Christian Bérard, illustration, 1935
Christian Bérard by Henri Cartier-Bresson, 1946
Christian Bérard by Henri Cartier-Bresson, 1946
Christian Bérard by photo by Dmitri Kessel 1940's
Christian Bérard by photo by Dmitri Kessel 1940's
Christian Bérard sketching a model in the offices of Paris Vogue, 1937, Life Archive
Christian Bérard sketching a model in the offices of Paris Vogue, 1937, Life Archive
Christian Bérard by photo by Dmitri Kessel 1940's
Christian Bérard by photo by Dmitri Kessel 1940's
 René-Jacques Christian Bérard, Paris 1947
René-Jacques Christian Bérard, Paris 1947
Edwige Feuillère, Christian Bérard et jacques Hebertot, in L'Aigle à deux têtes, 1946
Edwige Feuillère, Christian Bérard et jacques Hebertot, in L'Aigle à deux têtes, 1946
 Christian Bérard, photomontage 1936
Christian Bérard, photomontage 1936
Herbert List, Christian Bérard 1948
Herbert List, Christian Bérard 1948
Willy Maywald, Christian Bérard and Edwige Feuillère, fitting for L'Aigle à deux têtes, 1946
Willy Maywald, Christian Bérard and Edwige Feuillère, fitting for L'Aigle à deux têtes, 1946
Christian Bérard, Baigneurs solitaires sur la plage, oil on canvas, 1933
Christian Bérard, Baigneurs solitaires sur la plage, oil on canvas, 1933
 Christian Bérard and Coco Chanel 1930's
Christian Bérard and Coco Chanel 1930's
Lucien Freud, Portrait of Christian Bérard, conte on paper 46 x 42 cm, 1948
Lucien Freud, Portrait of Christian Bérard, conte on paper 46 x 42 cm, 1948
Christian Bérard  by Dmitri Kessel 1948
Christian Bérard by Dmitri Kessel 1948
The Institut Guerlain in Paris,Design by Jean-Michel Frank, Christian Bérard painted trompe l'oeil architecture on yellow fabric
The Institut Guerlain in Paris,Design by Jean-Michel Frank, Christian Bérard painted trompe l'oeil architecture on yellow fabric
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