Josephine Houssay

French, 1840-1914 Biography

Born in Nantes, Josephine Houssay was the sister of the French sculptor Fréderic Houssay. A student of Robert-Fleury and of Jean Jacques Henner, she debuted at the Salon of 1868. She was a member of the Societé des Artistes Francais starting in 1883, she obtained a third class medal in 1892 and a silver medal at the Exposition Universelle of 1900.

Josephine Houssay was part of a privileged group of women at the end of the 19th century recognized for their artistic talent. She regularly presented at the annual exhibition of Femmes Peintres (Women Painters) at the Palais de l’Industrie, and frequently participated at the Paris Salon, where she was always highly acclaimed.

The elegant and sensuous position and the nuanced expression of her models characterize the art of this remarkable painter. At times the artist seems to be rendering homage to the teachings of her master, Jean Jacques Henner, who is celebrated for painting beautiful nudes.

One of her portraits, entitled Louis de Ronchaud, who served as Director of the National Museum from 1881 to 1887, was exhibited in the Salon des Artistes Français in 1887 and was acquired by the State in 1888.

Awards/Memberships:
Third class medal, Societé des Artistes Francais, Paris, France, 1892
Silver medal, Exposition Universelle, Paris, France, 1900
Societé des Artistes Francais, Paris, France

Exhibitions:
Salon des Artistes Français, Paris, France, 1887
Societé des Artistes Francais, Paris, France, 1892
Exposition Universelle, Paris, France, 1900