Benett, Léon

Tagged: Art

Working name of French artist and illustrator Hippolyte Léon Benet (1839-1916), active from around 1867. Along with Édouard Riou, he is the best known of the many illustrators for Jules Verne's Voyages Extraordinaires sequence, beginning with Around the World in Eighty Days (1873), and providing illustrations and covers for twenty-five later novels in the huge project. Other French authors whose work he illustrated and/or provided covers for including Camille Flammarion and André Laurie. Perhaps less visually aggressive than his most significant predecessor Édouard Riou, Benett was clearly sympathetic to Verne's love of – but also his need to enwrap in domesticating detail – the geographically exotic; and his work can instantly evoke the enclosed but enticing worlds Verne so often created. [JC]

Hippolyte Léon Benet

born Orange, Vaucluse, France: 2 March 1839

died Toulon, France: 7 December 1916

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