Born in 1928, Bernard Buffet managed to pass the entrance examination for the École Nationale des Beaux-Arts of Paris at the age of just fifteen.
He then rather quickly made an impression on his contemporaries as was indeed shown by his success that followed.
Despite being in an ever constant process of reinventing himself throughout his long career, he nevertheless managed to conserve a uniqueness of style. Firstly, there is a sense of line; sharp, though not to say cutting; a hieratic self-restraint nearly somewhat ascetic, with a force that emanates from a linearity hearkening to Classicism.
There is also the element of his signature, which stands omnipresent on the canvas as an affirmation of identity, a confirmation of paternity, the script being itself much in keeping with the spirit of his work for its own iconicity and inimitability.
Bernard Buffet has never stopped painting, drawing, creating, from his youth and his “glamor” era to the final years of his genius carrier, when he produced the Life Cycle of Christ, Dante’s Inferno, The French Revolution, The World of the Circus… He still is concidered as a major artist of the 20th century.
He was made a knight of the Légion d’Honneur in 1971, and entered into the Académie Française in 1973. Concealed behind these honors lies a frenzy of work. It was thus that , at the start of the 1970s, he purchased the castle of Villiers le Mahieu, cloistering himelf in its confines for some four years, devoting hours on end daily to the Charter series and then afterwards to those Brittany and Auvergne Seascapes. In 1973, the Bernard Buffet Museum opened at the base of Mount Fuji, making him the first painter in the world to personally witness the opening of a museum devoted entirely to him. Long before deciding to put an end to his days, largely due to the fact of still not being able to paint, Marice Druon, of whom he produced several portraits, wrote of Buffet “I take him for being absolutely death-obsessed […] first and above all because he is a painter, supremely, and as such is drawn into an incessant battle with death, fighting against the fleeting aspect of all things, that being the very aspect which holds the largest appeal for him, and that he ever seeks to grasp and fix definitively.”
Aguttes auction house is honored to regularly present in its sales numerous paintings of the artist and to obtain successful results, confirming the artist’s coast thanks to buyers from all over the world. In june 2015, Aguttes sold a remarquable series of ten works of art by Buffet for a total of 1,139,000€, a perfect illustration of the genius of the artist and his favorite themes (landscapes, still lives, flowers, etc.). At this time, and with an auction result of 315,500€, Rouen, bateaux de commerce et péniches reached the world record for a landscape, after a fierce bidding battle.