A passionate nature lover who believed he, “heard the voices of the trees,” Rousseau was part of the Barbizon school—a group of artists named for a village about 30 miles from Paris where they were based. They often painted in the nearby Forest of Fontainebleau; Rousseau even helped to get the area preserved as a park. The Barbizon artists were part of a larger movement in literature, music and visual arts called the Romantic movement—in which artists painted emotional, expressive views of the world.


  • Title: The Forest Floor (Dessous de Bois)
  • Creator: Théodore Rousseau
  • Creator Lifespan: 1812/1867
  • Creator Nationality: French
  • Creator Gender: Male
  • Creator Death Place: Barbizon, Île-de-France, France
  • Creator Birth Place: Paris, Île-de-France, France
  • Date Created: c. 1840
  • Location Created: Barbizon, Île-de-France, France
  • Physical Dimensions: w16 x h20.88 in.
  • Type: Painting
  • Medium: Oil on panel

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