Palefroi in private collections
Historical Context of France
France stands out as one of the most influential agents of modernism. What is today known as the avant-garde was pioneered in the first half of the nineteenth century, and embraced progressive and cutting-edge movements such as Impressionism, Post-impressionism and Art Nouveau, driven by key figures of the art sphere. Applauded and dominant French artists from the early years of the twentieth century include Paul Cezanne, Pablo Picasso, Georges Braque, although he initially was a Spanish national who relocated in France, as well as Francis Picabia, Marcel Duchamp, Man Ray, and Le Corbusier, to name a few. Paris was considered to be the most important and intellectual artistic centre at the onset of the century and supported the development of such vital movements as Cubism, Fauvism, Dadaism and Surrealism, amongst others, which flourished in the post war era.