Limousin, Léonard

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Léonard Limousin (lāônär´ lēmōōzăN´, lēmôzăN´), c.1505–c.1577, French painter in enamel, most celebrated member of a family of Limoges enamel artists. His earliest authenticated works (1532) show both German and Italian influence. He was enameler and valet de chambre at the French court after 1548, and for Francis I and Henry II he executed plates, vases, goblets, medals, and exquisite portraits in enamel. They include plaques of the French kings, of Diane de Poitiers, of Luther, and of Calvin. His works are remarkable for their elegance, precise technique, and intense color. The art of Limousin is best studied in the Louvre, which owns many portraits and two celebrated votive tablets comprising 46 plaques. Fine examples of his art and the works of his shop are found in the Limoges Museum and the Cluny Museum, Paris. The Metropolitan Museum has several portrait plaques including those of the Huguenots François de Maurel and Claude Condinet, and of Francis I.