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Biography in brief
A great aviator painter and a fabulous witness of his time

Born on November 4th 1878, Guintrand du Panier street in Marseilles, he was educated at the Lycée Thiers, then to the Beaux Arts school, while working with his father in the morning in the family morocco leather-goods trade.

He wanted to be an artist, his first aquarelles dating back to 1888 when he was 10. This does not prevent him from practising rowing, sailing then skiing and motorbike. Many medals prove this sporting activity. In 1906 he put together his first plane “the sky house” that he broke when he took off because of a lack of space. He did it again. In 1913 he has a serious accident on a “Henriot” at the airfield in Reims. In July 1914 he went up the Rhône with a hydroplane up to Aix les Bains on Henri Fabre’s behalf.

During the 1914-1918 war he was a test pilot in Toulon then in Saint-Raphaël. After the war he went back to painting.

This period of my life, he told, spent in aviation, the incessant contact with the wild space of the sky and the sea, had revived and purified my vision, I was coming back to clearness, to light and the atmosphere of my early years in painting.

He took part in many exhibitions in Marseilles, Paris, Algeirs, Lyon, Grenoble, Geneva, Aix-en-Provence… and took part every year from 1930 to 1939, then after in 1946 to the Salon des Artistes de Provence where he got many prizes and more particularly the Desplace prize.

Some works are brought by the Conseil Général, the Cantini and Longchamp museums.

In 1936 he was elected at the Académie de Marseille, Arts class. During the 1939-1945 war, he was a voluntary serviceman - he was 61 already - in aviation as a technical agent of the SNCAE. During the occupation he painted with eagerness and managed to support his wife and his two daughters in spite of the difficult living conditions of that time.

He bought an old country-house at the Roucas-Blanc in Marseilles where he set up his workroom. He went on exhibiting.

In 1952 he showed at the Galerie Moulot “55 years of painting by the marseillais artist Edmond ASTRUC” where we could see the whole evolution of his art, from his earliest aquarelles up to the latest : “le porche de la Mairie de Marseille”.

In 1959 he built up a catamaran from the model of two floats of a hydroplane (he was 81) and left Marseilles following the coast. He was greeted on the Bendor island, at Ricard’s, then on the Embiez and joined the La Favière beach in Bormes les Mimosas. On board, he put his paint box : he chew and painted as soon as he arrived. On January 9th 1977 he worked in his workroom on a big painting “La Favière”.

He caught a cold. His painting has remained uncompleted.
He died gently on January 11th.
He was 99.