Three Diana Monkeys on a Branch (“cercopithecus diana”), 1929
Signed and dated, lower right, GCHOPARD/1929; inscribed, upper right, cércopithecus Diane
Oil on canvas
35 x 32 inches
89 x 81 cm
M. Neal Fiertag, Paris, 2006
Private collection, New York
Armand Dayot, Les Animaux, Paris, 1930, no.16, illustrated
Engraver for several books and isolated prints, Chopard shared a studio on the rue des Plantes in Paris with another well-known animalier artist, Marcel Lemar.
Although he painted and drew extensively, Chopard earned his living illustrating books with portraits and wood-block prints depicting animals. His favorite animals were bears and monkeys, particularly baboons, which he often depicted in oversized wood-block prints. In the company of his friend Lemar, he sketched in the zoos of the Jardin des Plantes and the Bois de Vincennes, a French tradition that goes back to Delacroix and Barye.
Chopard exhibited initially at the Société nationale des Beaux-Arts, the Salon des Animaliers during the 1920s, and regularly at the Salon des Indépéndants held at the Grand Palais. At the end of his life he and Lemar published Souvenirs sur Marcel Lemar et Gaston Chopard, La pipe en écume, 1942-1945.