Beauty, Rarity, History...The M.S. Rau Antiques Blog

Bill Rau

M.S. Rau Antiques

Led by third-generation owner and published fine art expert Bill Rau, M.S. Rau Antiques has grown by leaps and bounds since his grandfather Max Rau opened the doors in 1912 to a then-small antiques store in the heart of New Orleans' historic French Quarter. Bill's extensive knowledge and reputation as a leader places him among the most respected antique experts and gallery owners today.

A New Orleans institution for over 100 years, M.S. Rau Antiques is among the premier antiques galleries in the world. Located in the heart of the French Quarter, our 25,000 square foot gallery overflows with incredible antiques by names including Tiffany & Co., Paul Revere and Fabergé. Our unparalleled selection of important, original paintings and sculpture spans the 16th through the 21st century, created by legendary artists such as Brueghel, Monet and Rockwell, and our diverse selection of exquisite jewels, including rare colored diamonds, Kashmir sapphires and Burma rubies is without equal.

More Than a Name: The Paintings of Jacques Martin-Ferrières

Folk Dancers by Jacques Martin-Ferrières.  The artist's inimitable technique, rich with swift and short brushstrokes of opaque color, reveals the strong influence of his father, Henri Martin, and the legendary Post-Impressionist generation before him.
Folk Dancers by Jacques Martin-Ferrières. The artist's inimitable technique, rich with swift and short brushstrokes of opaque color, reveals the strong influence of his father, Henri Martin, and the legendary Post-Impressionist generation before him.
(M.S. Rau Antiques, New Orleans)
  • Scène de Rue (Street Scene) by Jacques Martin-Ferrières.

    Scène de Rue (Street Scene) by Jacques Martin-Ferrières.

    M.S. Rau Antiques, New Orleans

The paintings of Jacques Martin-Ferrières (1893-1972), abounding with exuberance and skill, stand as brilliantly-hued snapshots of the human spirit. The son of famed Post-Impressionist Henri Martin, Martin-Ferrières sought to step out of his father’s commanding shadow and forge a path of his own, a feat that he not only achieved, but surpassed. 

By the age of six, it became clear that art was in Martin-Ferrières’ blood, as he had already begun to draw regularly and dabble in painting. At first, however, he didn’t allow art to be a driving force in his life, deciding instead to devote his formative studies to literature, music, and, predominantly, science, the field in which he earned his degree. His scientific training would prove to be a tremendous asset for his later artistic career, as he applied his knowledge of chemistry to his painting techniques. 

He received his artistic training both through his father as well as at the École des Beaux-Arts, and went on to exhibit regularly and with great success at the Paris Salon from 1920 to 1965. His paintings were considered so exceptional that Martin-Ferrières earned the privilege of displaying his works “Hors-Concours”, allowing him to bypass the jury vetting process. 

The winner of several Salon and international exhibition medals, national prizes and the Legay-Lebrun Prize (Prix de L’Institut), Martin-Ferrières’ paintings have garnered considerable praise and admiration, not only for their technical skill, but for the sheer joy and sincerity they exude. 

In his Folk Dancers, Martin-Ferrières utilizes his signature blend of vibrant color and thick, generous brushwork to bring a gathering of peasant women to life. Clad in traditional dresses of radiant reds, peaches and yellows contrasted beautifully by rich purples, blues and greens, the scene expresses an appreciation for happiness in every aspect of life as this village comes together in celebration. This closeness of community is also presented in Scène de Rue (Street Scene), as the women of a quaint township fill the streets. A veritable rainbow radiating from the canvas, the cityscape showcases Martin-Ferrières mastery in the use of color and composition to craft incredible artworks that are both passionate and proficient.    

Though seemingly destined to follow in his father’s legendary footsteps, Martin-Ferrières proved he was much more than just “the son of…” He was a commanding and gifted artist in his own right, leaving behind a stunning oeuvre that conveyed the joie de vive he carried with him throughout his life.


Learn more about Jacques Martin-Ferrières and his paintings


About M.S. Rau Antiques:
M.S. Rau Antiques has spent over 100 years earning the trust of discerning collectors world-wide. Located in the heart of New Orleans’ historic French Quarter, our peerless showroom houses one of the world’s most extensive and stunning collections of important fine art by artists such as Monet and Rockwell, rare 18th- and 19th-century antiques, and breathtaking jewelry, including rare colored diamonds.

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