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(Born Paris, 7 June 1848; died Atuona, Marquesas Islands, 8 May 1903). French painter, printmaker, sculptor and ceramicist, with Cézanne and van Gogh the greatest of the Post-Impressionists and like them a seminal figure in the development of modern art. His father was a radical journalist and his mother, who was half French and half Peruvian Creole, also had strong political convictions. They were opponents of the regime of Louis Napoleon (later Napoleon III) and in 1851 the family left France for exile in Peru. Gauguin spent part of his childhood in Lima before returning to France with his mother in 1855 (his father had died on the outward journey). He joined the merchant marine in 1865, transferred to the French navy in 1868, and from 1872 worked successfully as a stockbroker.

Text source: The Oxford Dictionary of Art and Artists (Oxford University Press)

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