Celluloid and Canvas - Michèle Morgan

March 11, 2017

Did you know that French actress Michèle Morgan was not only an exceptional on-screen talent and world-class beauty, but a gifted artist as well? After having her portrait painted by Moïse Kisling in 1943, Morgan was inspired to take up painting herself and enrolled in art school in Los Angeles.

She apparently started off doing portraiture, but the only images I could find from this time are from the black and white photo featured below, on her easels and on the wall. They're absolutely stunning, and I wish I could find more of them!

Later on Morgan moved on to still life and abstract works, working on large canvases in bright, bold colors. In an interview with Paris Match in 2008 she said that she had sold at least 100 pieces but still thought of the craft as a hobby! Expressing modesty and calling herself an "amateur," Morgan definitely sold herself short -- her paintings are vibrant expressive pieces that could have easily been painted by a professional artist. As an artist myself, I admire her use of color and I envy her ability to form cohesive, striking abstract works using freeform shapes. Abstraction is harder than it looks and it takes a real talent to create pieces this beautiful.


KC said...

I didn't know this about her! Makes sense that so many actors paint though. Just another way to express themselves. I love the BW one second from the bottom. Very interesting post.

kate gabrielle said...

I agree, I think a lot of actors are multi-talented. So far I've found works by Michele Morgan, Dirk Bogarde, Frank Sinatra, Kim Novak, and James Mason. I think Edward G. Robinson painted as well.. or maybe he collected paintings... I'll have to double-check that!

And isn't that photo fantastic? I had most of these images saved in my drafts for a few weeks but I decided to do one last image search before publishing today and that was one of the ones I found! I love it! :)