The Easel


The art critic Will Gompertz characterises Rousseau as “the Susan Boyle of his day” – honest and unsophisticated. His primitive style appealed to Picasso and later the Surrealists and secured for Rousseau his place in art history. An exhibition in Venice hangs Rousseau beside some more vaunted contemporaries, perhaps inviting the view that he was the ‘middle aged nobody’ who was in the right place at the right time.