Henri Rousseau Mandrill In The Jungle
Henri Julien Felix Rousseau was a French Post-Impressionist painter in the Naive or Primitive manner. He was also known as Le Douanier (the customs officer), a humorous description of his occupation as a toll collector.
Ridiculed during his lifetime by critics, he came to be recognized as a self-taught genius whose works are of high artistic quality. Rousseau’s work exerted an extensive influence on several generations of avant-garde artists.
His best-known paintings depict jungle scenes, even though he never left France or saw a jungle. His inspiration came from illustrated books and the botanical gardens in Paris. To the critic Arsene Alexandre, he described his frequent visits to the Jardin des Plantes: “When I go into the glass houses and I see the strange plants of exotic lands, it seems to me that I enter into a dream.”