Lived all his life in poverty. Was a printer, served in the police. In his free time, visited museums, studied in the Louvre Flemish and Dutch masters, in the evenings I studied at the school of crafts Goble and in the private Academy of Charles Suissa.
Francois Boven. Almsgiving
From 1848 took up landscape painting, three of his works received the medal of the Paris Salon (1849). After this he gave himself up to painting. Exhibited in the Salon of the rejected, along with Courbet, who was friends with. Often in Flanders and the Netherlands. At the end of life completely blind, only existed thanks to the support of friends.
Started thanks to my own stubbornness to work in the printing, françois left his father's house and entered by the scribe in the Palace of justice, where he worked by day, at night, laboring in the printing. Having a place clerical employee with a salary of a thousand francs a month, of bonven could afford to devote the evening to practice drawing.
In 1845 he became a student of françois Granet and, following the example of his mentor, seeking the characters of his paintings among the monks, portraits of nuns who care for patients in hospitals for the poor.
Beginning in 1847 of bonven exhibited at the Salon.
Sincerity, which breathe his paintings and choice of subjects allows to compare it with Chardonnay, or with Peter de Hoch. As the paintings of these two masters work Bonvena permeated with an atmosphere of calm and concentration, and his still lifes show love to the simple and mundane subjects: the candle, the coffee mill, the copper basin; the painting, which depicts the preparation for a peasant's dinner, puts Bonvena in a row with the masters of realism.
However, at the same time, he strongly supported the first steps in the art of Manet. The desire Bonvena to convey changes in lighting can be attributed to the artist by the predecessors of impressionism, and his charcoal drawings are surprisingly reminiscent of the drawings of Seurat.
In 1886, the friends organized a retrospective exhibition of his work, which presents about a hundred paintings and six months later the artist went blind.
There was organized a charity sale, the proceeds of which are transferred Bonveno; a year later he dies. Paintings Francois Bonvena touch us with your humility and sincerity and authenticity, in search of which he spent his life, this modest worker.