Barraud was Swiss. He worked in Paris for a time during the 1920's and painted mainly still lifes and portraits, including many double portraits featuring himself and his wife. He was one of 4 brothers who all painted or sculpted at one time or another. He suffered several periods of illness during his life and died of tuberculosis in 1934, at the age of 35. Beyond that I know little of this painter, and have come across only a handful of his paintings since first being stopped in my tracks by the work "La toilette" several years ago.
Barraud was clearly an exceptional talent, and he ranks as one of the best "lesser known" artists I have come across in recent years. His work is stylistically close to contemporaries such as Balthus and Moise Kisling, and he was as talented as either of those artists with a paintbrush in his hand. His eye, however, is far sharper and his composition and subject matter are far more compelling than either of the aforementioned painters.
It is a shame information on his life and work is so thin on the ground. A small retrospective of the Barraud brother's work took place in Switzerland in 2005 but other than that there is little - I cannot find him in any major collections outside the Pompidou Centre in Paris. There is almost nothing about him online and there are only one or two small, out of print publications that feature his work. A true loss.
"Ste. Nitouche" Oil on canvas, 1930.
"Toile de Jouy" Oil on canvas, 1931.
"Le Malcontent" Oil on canvas, 1930.
"Le Philateliste" Oil on canvas, 1929.
"L'Atelier" Oil on canvas, 1928.
"La Toilette" Oil on canvas, 1930
"Les Trois Enfants" Oil on canvas, 192?
"Palette et Pinceaux" Oil on canvas, 1928.
"Yvonne en robe de velour" Oil on canvas, 1930.
"Le Chardons a la bourse bleu" Oil on canvas, 1930.
"La seance de peinture" Oil on canvas, 1932.
"Les casse-dents" Oil on canvas, 1932.
"Les songes creux" Oil on canvas, 1933.
"Marie Barraud" Oil on canvas, 19??
"La Langoureuse" Oil on canvas, 1932.
"Le Marauder" Oil on canvas, 1931.