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Our selection of works of art by Max Jacob (1876-1944)

Works of art (engravings, lithographs, drawings) by Max Jacob (1876-1944) a french poet, novelist, essayist, and painter, who was born in Quimper (Brittany) and who died on March 1944, when he was imprisoned in the Drancy camp. In 1894, he received the French prize at the Concours Général, and settled in Paris. He was spending his time in Montmartre with his numerous friends. He acquaited with Pablo Picasso, Georges Braque, Henri Matisse and Amedeo Modigliani. So as to survive, Max was trying to sell his gouaches. In 1907, he settled at the Bateau-Lavoir, where he used to meet his friends Picasso, Juan Gris. On September the 22nd 1909, the image of the Christ appeared to him on the wall of his room. On December 16th 1914, he saw it a second time at the Cinema. Born jewish, he converted to catholicism. In 1932, Max Jacob is named Knight of the Legion of Honour. Max Jacob goes to Saint-Benoît-sur-Loire in 1936 and stayed there definitively. He was living a quasi monastic life. In 1937 he acquainted with poets and painters from the younger generation, et received a lot of visits from Paul Eluard, Jean Cocteau, Maurice de Vlaminck, Fernand Léger, Pablo Picasso, Pierre Mac Orlan, Roland Dorgelès... In 1942, Max Jacob had to wear the yellow star, because born jewish. This same year, his sister and husband died in the COmpiègne camp. In 1943 his brother died in Auschwitz. In 1944, his other sister and her husband died as well because of deportation. On February 24th, 1944, Max Jacob was arrested by the Gestapo and imprisoned in Orléans. On February 18th, he was taken to Drancy. On the way, he sent a last message to the abbott Fleureau, and to Jean Cocteau. His friends, including Jean Cocteau and Sacha Guitry did everything they could to free him. But two weeks later, he died of exhaustion at the camp. Max Jacob was a friend of Jean Moulin, who use to borrow the pseudonym of Max when acting as a resistant. On November 17th, 1960, he was officially declared « Poète mort pour la France » (Poet dead for France).