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Erik Desmazières
Birth Date: 
Birth Place: 
Rabat, Morocco
French printmaker Erik Desmaziéres is known for his fantastical images that bring to mind works created by Hieronymus Bosch (1450-1516) and Giovanni Battista Piranesi (1720-1778), but yet are thoroughly modern. Born in Rabat, Morocco in 1948 where his father served as a diplomat, Desmaziéres grew up in Morocco and Portugal. After graduating from the Institut des Études Politiques, Paris, in 1971 he studied briefly at the L’École Spéciale d’Architecture, Paris, but decided to pursue art instead of politics or architecture. He took night classes in printmaking at the Cours du Soir de la Ville de Paris under the painter and printmaker Jean Delpech (1916-1988) and from 1972 received encouragement from Philippe Mohlitz (b. 1941) and other French printmakers. Desmaziéres received recognition early in his career when he was awarded the Grand Prix des Arts de la Ville de Paris in 1978. In 1981 New York City’s Fitch-Febvrel Gallery gave him a retrospective exhibition of his prints from 1972 to 1981, followed up by exhibitions in 1991, 2001 and 2012 surveying his works from the previous decade and each accompanied by a catalog that together constitute the catalog raisonné of his prints. Exhibitions of his work have been mounted in museums in Europe, the United States, Canada and Japan, notably at Amsterdam’s Rembrandthuis Museum (2004), the Musée Carnavalet (Paris, 2006), Fondazione Il Bisonte (Florence, 2009), Telfair Museum (Savannah, 2010),Musée des Beaux-Arts (Montreal, 2009) and the Bibliothèque national de France (Paris, 2012). Elected a member of the French Académie des Beaux-Arts in 2008, he served as president of the Académie in 2016. Desmaziéres is a past president of the Societe des Peintres Graveurs Francais, a Chevalier de la Legion d’Honner, an Officier des Arts et Lettres and a Chevalier des Palmes Académiques. He lives and works in Paris. (TNB 12/2017) Selected bibliography: Fitch, Andrew, et al. Erik Desmazières: Etchings 1972-1981; Erik Desmazières: Etchings 1982-1991; Erik Desmazières: Etchings 1991-2001; Erik Desmazières Prints 2001-2011. 4 vols. New York: Fitch-Febvrel Gallery,1981, 1991, 2001 and 2012.