Michel Arnoux (Arnoux Auguste Michel, said)

Paris, November 11 1833 – July 14 1877, Ecouen

This painter, less famous than the other artists of the Ecouen School, has an original peculiarity concerning his name. He switched between his first name and his family name though out his career. “Arnoux” is less commonly recognized than “Michel”.

He was born in the village of Belleville (not yet part of Paris City) and became student of Louis Cogniet (1794-1880), Léon Dansaert and Pierre Edouard Frère. Michel Arnoux draws attention to his paintings because of their realistic matters like his masters ones. This was especially noticeable during the 1866 Salon de Paris exhibition with: “la lecture du Petit Journal à Ecouen” (Reading of “Le Petit journal” at Ecouen) and “La jeune mere” (The young mother). Twenty of Michel Arnounx’s paintings were selected to be exhibited between 1864 and 1877. These were important yearly exhibitions. His paintings are always showing scenery of common lives like la “Leçon de lecture” (the reading lesson), la “Cruche cassée” (the broken pitcher), etc.

His presence in the village of Ecouen is confirmed in the census of 1873. He was the husband of Clémence Amélie Cochu.
He lived in a sizeable house at 19 rue d’Ezanville (presently rue Paul-Lorillon). The large glass window of his workshop is still present on the right side of that large house.

Michel Arnoux was very well integrated into the painters colony of Ecouen (Léon Dansaert is the Godfather of his children).
He died at the age of 44.

For further information, please read the book “L’Ecole d’Ecouen, une colonie de peintres au XIXe siècle” (bilingual French-English).