Honoré Daumier (1808–1879) was a famous French painter, printmaker, sculptor, and cartoonist. He was born in a working family in Marseille, France. He lived in poverty, working around multiple jobs to make a living such as apprentice, postman, and shop assistant. All kinds of experiences made him have a better understanding of the lives of the lower classes.
In 1825, Daumier began to create paintings. Most of his early works were published in “Satire” magazine, reflecting the people’s suffering and criticizing the government’s corruption.
In 1832, Daumier was imprisoned for drawing the satirical lithograph “Gargantua”. “Gargantua” is a greedy character in the novel “Gargantua and of Pantagruel.” Daumier satirizes Louis Philippe through this character, who exploited the working people from their hard work with a big mouth open. As soon as this work was made public, it immediately caused an uproar.
Most of Daumier’s paintings have the theme of the ordinary life of the people in the lower classes. Just like this “The Third-Class Carriage”, bold and powerful brushstrokes, strong color contrast, rough and pungent characters, and as original as it comes from real lives.