Born in a poor family in 1815 in Lyon, very early showed a love and a rare ability to art. Being 19 years old in Paris, developed his talent for copying paintings of the old painters in the Louvre gallery, mostly the Dutch masters, and a short time he studied under L. Konya, but generally formed myself, not suffering the influence of any of the then leading figures of French painting. He was buried in Poissy (Yvelines), where he was mayor in 1846.
Works Maconie — painter, draughtsman, engraver, sculptor, kept almost all of the museums, but they are rarely seen in the halls, they are kept in Museum storerooms. This artist is well known in the art, to collectors, but the General public knows little. And after all the time, covered by oblivion the name of Ernest Masone, cannot be accused of injustice. Maconie —
the spokesman of the sentiments of his era, or rather, his client — the French bourgeoisie to gain power and gained force during the reign of Napoleon III (1848-1870).
With the name Masone linked the spread of genre painting in France, under flourishing at the time in Western Europe and Russia. Masone was born in the year of the Vienna Congress of 1815, — ended the era of the French revolution and the Napoleonic wars. The mother of the future artist studied painting on porcelain .the art of miniatures from the famous miniaturist mV jacoto. He received his artistic education in Paris in the Studio of L. Konya. At the age of 19 Masonii exhibited for the first time their works in the Salon, and since then became its permanent participant. His first works, among them small painting "Flemish bourgeois", was bought by the French society of art Amateurs in Paris, which indicated the success of the young painter, determined the theme of his life—, one -, two-figure genre scenes, characters who were Flemish or Dutch 17th century, French 18th century or during the reign of king Louis XIV. At the end of 1830-ies Maconie spotted by the jury of the Salon, criticism; to him comes the success, then the glory of the virtuoso, which he supports constant diligence in work. In 1840-50-ies his paintings to buy for serious collectors in whose collections they are combined with works of the Dean, Theodore Rousseau, and other artists of the Barbizon school. Meanwhile, the early success Maconie surprising, if we recall that at his paintings you can see the first paintings of Delacroix and the romantics,
later paintings of Courbet, Corot, Barbizon school and, later, paintings of the Impressionists.
Picture Masone represented countless smokers, young men with books or letters, Musketeers or scene of reading letters, playing cards, losses or fights, Although they reminded contemporaries of the artist re-opened (after Rembrandt) Dutch genre paintings of Ter Borch, Ostade, but still, for the most part, a fairly approximate resemblance differed from them. The Dutch we see a genuine life, while in the paintings Maconie — only theatrical mise-EN-scenes which unfolds in the setting of 16-18 centuries. This impression is no accident. Before writing this piece, the artist was invited into his workshop of actors, dressed them in costume, the film set the scene and painted from nature, not just locking accessories only, items of clothing, but somehow suminagashi folds, highlights, shadows lying on them. Created the effect of photography or a photographic effect due to the composition of the painting. All the characters works Masonia was located always in the foreground, as if before the camera lens, posing calmly singly or in groups. The photo is a daguerreotype and genre painting Maconie, being the same age, often competed with each other. That's why we feel so much in the paintings of the artist's commitment to authenticity. The "reality" of the historical genre Masone not only amused the eyes of the viewer-the bourgeoisie, but often caused him to identify with the characters in the paintings, unlike the paintings of the romantics did not require intense empathy passions of heroes, but gave rise to melancholic contemplation, tiring fantasising. They were pleasant as was pleasing Cabinet pictures, as was a nice cabin painting intended for rich bourgeois. Indeed, the prices of paintings Maconie estimated in the hundreds of thousands, they increased together with the success. Thank Maconie grew, but most importantly — didn't cheat on him. Even in the early years of the 20th century the exhibition of French art was not the ills of paintings by this artist. In his work saw a manifestation of the French spirit, admired the craftsmanship, virtuosity of brush Maconie, brush strokes called "feather Hummingbird", was surprised a brilliant command of drawing. His paintings were a French salon version of genre painting, which flourished at that time in Europe, but in contrast to the socially critical paintings of Russian artists with a distinctive raznochintsy intelligentsia to expose injustice, in contrast to the touchingly sentimental scenes glorifying the burgher character of the Germans, genre scenes Maconie far from contemporary reality, its problems. How would "historical" heroes of his paintings — just participating in a masquerade party, "organized" by the artist according to the needs and possibilities of perception of the bourgeoisie, the Nouveau riche III Empire. It is the social activity of the "third estate" brought to life genre painting, has ensured the sustained success of paintings Masone and his disciples, first of all Spaniard Fortuny.
But Maconie was known not only as the author of a small genre compositions. In 1860-e years the artist turned to writing battle scenes, picture of the Napoleonic campaigns. There are paintings "1805", "Yen. 1806", "1807", "Retreat over Berezina river", "1814". If you compare his "Retreat over Berezina" close
painting of the romantic artist Charles "the Retreat of Napoleon from Russia", full of tragic experiences the fateful events of 1812, the first work seem indifferent photographs only happened once. But the picture Masone was filled with illustrations of numerous armies, and, looking at the smallest and most distant figure of a soldier, you could see every hair, every crease of his clothes, was so touched by the unsuspecting audience! Most likely, that artist when writing battle songs used the picture in this Masone was criticized even fans of his works, when in 1871 he showed the audience his new work, "1870-1871", dedicated to the events of the Paris commune. The artist's use of photography as an aid in the work played a fatal role. In the late 19th century, via printing, possessing a new in comparison with the daguerreotype properties, began to produce fake. Maconie became an artist, whose works were simulated particularly well. In the early 20th century interest in his work from the public drops. Most of the artists were skeptical about the work Maconie in his glory days. Now he is numbered with the justly forgotten artists.