Bérard

Christian (1902-1949). Painter, illustrator and stage designer. He was born in Paris, and had good teachers, including Maurice Denis and Edouard Vuillard, as well as excellent co-workers, such as Jean Cocteau and the ballet librettist Boris Kochno, who was Diaghilev’s secretary. His eclecticism took him away from painting but made him a key player in the worlds of fashion, illustration, fabric design, and theater. His illustrations appeared in Harper’s Bazaar and Vogue, with particular influence on Schiaparelli and the young Dior. His style showed traces of Surrealism. He found his true calling in the theater. His stage designs and costumes were the symbols of an era, starting with his début in 1930 working on Kochno’s ballet La Nuit, which had music by Henri Sauguet and choreography by Serge Lifar. He worked many times with Louis Jouvet, including on L’école des femmes (1936), La folle de Chaillot (1945) and Don Juan (1947). He designed the costumes for Cocteau’s film La belle et la bête. He died on stage while working on Fourberies de Scapin, same as the play’s author, Molière.