René Victor Auberjonois (18 August 1872 – 11 October 1957) was a Swiss post-impressionist painter and one of the leading Swiss artists of the 20th century. Born to wealthy parents, Auberjonois lived a jeunesse dorée, studying the classics, starting a banking apprenticeship and serving as a lieutenant of cavalry in the Swiss Army. After dabbling in caricature and music during a first trip to England, he decided to become a painter and enrolled in the Kensington School of Art. In 1896, he moved to Paris to study with Luc-Olivier Merson and at the École des Beaux-Arts. His budding French career was noted in Switzerland, and after the turn of the century, he made the acquaintance of fellow painter Ferdinand Hodler, conductor Ernest Ansermet and writer Charles Ferdinand Ramuz. Auberjonois would later create numerous book illustrations and stage designs for Ramuz and for other artists, including for Igor Stravinsky's L'histoire du soldat. In 1908, he moved to Jouxtens-Mézery in Switzerland and married Augusta Grenier, whom he then divorced in 1919. They had two sons – Maurice (b. 1909) and Fernand (1910–2004). Fernand would become a renowned journalist in the U.S. and his son René an actor. The support of a patron, the collector Hans Graber, helped Auberjonois during the 1910s, while in the 1920s he began to acquire a certain public reputation through expositions and prominent commissions. A second marriage in 1922 with Marguerite Hélène Buvelot fell apart in 1929, as Auberjonois recognised his inability to reconcile his work with a family life.


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