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A French child bicycle in form of a motorcycle
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An oil on canvas painting of a reclining partially nude woman and two cats in an interior scene. The piece is signed and dated (1931) in the lower right. Fernand Gaston Longchamp was an impressionist and expressionist artist born in America to a French mother and Cayuga-Iroquois father. His family moved to France around the time of Gaston's birth and his father, an artist himself, was acquainted with many prominent artists in Paris such as Renoir, Signac and Seurat. Gaston would eventually apprentice with his father and became familiar with these artists himself. By fourteen he was working with painters in Montmartre and benefited from insights from Raoul Dufy, Georges Braque, Henri Matisse and others. He worked with Picasso painting stage designs for the Russian Ballet in 1911 and with Marc Chagall painting scenes for Stravinsky's Firebird. He briefly attended the Academie des Beaux Arts before returning to America in the 1920s where he would go on to become one of the foremost set designers in the United States. He set up a studio in Kintnersville, Bucks County, Pennsylvania where he worked prolifically until retiring in the 1970s. He passed away in 1986.
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