Max Papart was a French painter and printmaker. He was born in 1911 in Marseilles, France. Papart drew continuously from an early age. Notwithstanding his mother’s desperate efforts to convince him that becoming a chicken farmer would be a far more rewarding vocation than being an artist, he went to Paris in 1935 and attended the École du Louvre.
He became well known for his highly idiosyncratic style that is a surreal Pop Art interpretation of Cubism. Exuberant depictions of musicians, circus performers, animals, lovers, cyclists were among the many lively images that were done in vibrant colors showing movement across flat planes of color.
Papart was a highly regarded master printmaker that utilized a variety of techniques including, but certainly not limited, to carborundum etchings, aquatint, and adding textured handmade paper to bring the images to life.
The following year he was already exhibiting at the Salon des Indépendants and would later also exhibit at the Salon de Mai and Salon des Comparaisons. During the war he returned to Marseille and studied at the Auzias Academy while also fighting with the French Resistance and eventually helping to liberate the town.
In 1950 he returned to Paris. By this time he was establishing a reputation and received much critical acclaim and several awards.
By the end of the 1950’s Papart’s work became distinctly more abstracted and introduced influences from cultures as diverse as Aegean and Aztec throughout the 1960’s and 1970’s. During this period he exhibited extensively around the world including: 1965 Berlin; 1967 Sweden; 1969 Italy, San Francisco; 1972 Sweden, Canada, New York, Rome; 1973 Brussels, Antwerp, Rome, Geneva, Basel, Mexico; 1975 Sweden; 1976 New York, Sweden. In 1971 he was awarded his first retrospective at the Musée Saint-Ouen.
Papart's artwork has been exhibited in hundreds of museums and galleries worldwide.
1948 Prix de l’Union Méditerranéenne pour l’Art Moderne
1949 Lauréat Prix Hallmark, 1949
1950 Prix de la Critique, 1950
1950 Prix de la Jeune Peintre Paris, France
1951 Lauréat de la Biennale de Peinture, Menton