LA TOUR, Georges de:
French Baroque Era Painter, 1593-1652
French painter. He was well known in his lifetime, especially for his depictions of candlelit subjects, then was forgotten until the 20th century, when the identification of works previously misattributed established his reputation as a giant of French painting. His early works were painted in a realistic manner and influenced by the dramatic chiaroscuro of Caravaggio. The paintings of La Tour's maturity are marked by a startling geometric simplification of the human form and by the depiction of interior scenes lit only by the glare of candles or torches. His religious paintings done in this manner have a monumental simplicity and a stillness that expresses both contemplative quiet and wonder. Little is known of his life, and only four or five of his paintings are dated.