Raoul Dufy’s work is classic of the Fauvism period and his paintings had a colourful, decorative flair which became very popular for use on ceramics and textiles. He is best known for his work depicting images of open-air social events, however he also worked as a printmaker, book illustrator, draftsman, a designer of furniture, a scenic designer and a planner of public spaces. Dufy left school at age 14 and he took evening art classes when he was 18. He completed a year of military service and then the following year in 1900 he won a scholarship to École Nationale Supérieure des Beaux-Arts in Paris where he met Othon Friesz, a fellow French artist of the Fauvist movement.
Dufy was heavily influenced by impressionist painters including Claude Monet and Camille Pissarro and some of his early work recently sold for almost 2 million pounds in 2008. 1937, Dufy completed one of the largest paintings ever envisaged, La Fée Electricité. The painting was an extremely admired as an ode to electricity and was exhibited at the 1937 Exposition Internationale in Paris. During the latter part of his career in the late 1940s, Dufy exhibited at the Salon des Tuileries in Paris but by 1950 he was plagued with rheumatoid arthritis which caused his painting abilities to diminish.