Richard Ozanne Studies with Artist Gustave Nebel (France)
I remember him well, Gustave Nebel, a teacher and artist with a long history of work:
Now to study with Nebel
was not an easy issue!
did not readily take students as his
studio was filled already and had been for some time.
It was not an easy venture to find the kind of teacher that I personally needed, and as a budding artist it was surely-absolutely not an issue- of looking up 'art studio' in the Cannes phone directory, or simply accepting any artist as being a specific trainer, coach and master.
Surely now everyone calls themselves an artist and every town is filled to the brim with artists, or retirees willing to give lessons in floral or landscape work to leave behind the history of art with which they may be totally inexperienced to teach.
was a legend.
had been painting professionally since the late 1920's and had under his
element a specific technique and range of a master artist.
This was not "fun" time, nor a simple exercise of being a painter for laughs, fun or games.
This is a craft of art and part of a legacy to learn more and gain more for my future career.
Gustave Nebel was born in Paris, France and became and American Citizen.
married well known American actress and children's book writer Lydie Vallois, who was extremely well known in the cinema and theater of France and Cannes as well . He
attended the Academie Julian, Ecole des Arts Decoratifs, and the Ecole National des Beaux Arts.
is known as an artist and illustrator of books for young readers.
I t was "Once in a Blue Moon" when someone would be allowed to study with Nebel
, because of the sheer intensity of his
teachings ..he would not often let younger pupils into the studio.
I was lucky.
Studio was available-
My personal reference was a noted Parisian art dealer named Marcel Asquinazi who first introduced me to Nebel
I produced large amounts of work and finally achieved a level of confidence with Nebel
, earning a local card that would give me an extra personal discount on materials at the art supply shop.
would tip me in on these events as well as others as they would happen.
Of course it was a closed session exhibit, and the reference of my teacher Nebel did open doors.
was happy about the meeting and wondered if I had a chance to show him my sketchbook...then he
smiled..and shrugged his
shoulders looking back at me and making a statement that I would not soon forget.
"Remember it is not a celebrity that makes the artist...not immitation..not being like them, but the artist must be himself!
responded, "It is never a case of being known that an artist is given his
wings...its the fact that an artist is...just is...an artist" He
didnt like Dalis work however.
preferred the masters of the Nabis...Bonnard and Vuilliard as well as Sisley.
My portfolio was 2 feet thick of flat work after my studies with Nebel
The time studying in France with Gustave Nebel
gave me a painting (a rather large one) in gouache-his favorite medium of a fountain that never ceased to flow-a most amazing painting, the colors so delicate that one would think just-genius the use of color from this masters hands!
Of course he
was one of the most diverse artists that I could remember.
also knew that this world had changed and he
was receptive to his...remarking "I know of a very good art school in New York that has always been good...The Art Students League...Do you know of this very fine school?
It was something of an irony that I later attended the Art Students League
for 4 years the very next year.
was pleased at my gains and accomplishments, making me somewhat vow to keep up my work!
"If its not exhibitions...teach!
told me in a daunting tone addressed with a smile.
He realized I was an artist with tenacity and the ability to see my vision through.
I constantly continued my work in art..and have until the present day!
"Of course there are warnings" he
said, and "these warnings will try to change your ways!
"The world is filled to to capacity of people who want to be, but few who are, dividing the wheat from the chaff..and many artists are not well known till they are..
(he laughed) and pointed at the ground.
On return to France in 1990 I saw a small eloquent museum set up for Nebel
had left a legacy of Art to the French Government as well as the pupils who had studied with him.