Born in 1861 in Banyuls-sur-Mer in the southwest France, Aristide Maillol is a painter, sculptor, and tapestry designer. At the age of 24, he was admitted to the Ecole des Beaux-Arts de Paris. In 1893, influenced by Paul Gauguin, Maillol started working on tapestry design, creating works that reflected his great admiration for the Nabis. When he was almost 40 years old, an eye disease forced him to give up tapestry weaving and start focusing on sculpture. Featuring the classicizing depictions of mature women, Maillol’s work determines to preserve the Greco-Roman sculptural tradition through emotional restraint and precise composition.
In 1902, the art dealer Ambroise Vollard held Maillol’s first solo exhibition in his gallery at Rue Laffite, Paris. In 1904, Maillol began exhibiting in the Salon d’Automne where his recognition was gradually confirmed. In 1913, his first solo exhibition outside of France took place in the Netherlands; the same year, his works was exhibited at the famous Armory Show in the US, and in 1933, the Kunsthalle Basel held a retrospective for him. In 1944, 83-year-old Maillol died in an automobile accident in his hometown Banyuls. Today, his sculptures are included in collections worldwide, including Hirshhorn Museum in Washington D.C., Musée d’Orsay and Musée Maillol in Paris, and the MoMA in New York.