Henri-Pierre Danloux was a highly successful French painter and draughtsman.
Danloux was born in Paris. Brought up by his architect uncle, he was apprenticed, in 1770, to Nicolas-Bernard Lépicié (1735-1784). Three years later he was admitted into the studio of Joseph-Marie Vien (1716-1809) with whom he travelled to Rome in 1775.
His Italian journeys – he also visited Naples, Palermo and Florence – provoked more of an interest in landscape and portrait craft than in antiquarian ruins prized by so many of his contemporaries. In his early period, Danloux specialised in the intimate genre scenes of his first mentor, Lépicié, as well as in the execution of small-scale portraits.
In 1783 Danloux returned from Italy and settled in Lyon and Paris. In Paris he made the acquaintance of the Baronne d’Erigny, who was instrumental in obtaining the young artist a number of important portrait commissions. During the French Revolution Danloux exhibited at the 1791 Salon but, loyal to the French royal family, he emigrated to London in 1792 where he temporarily made his home, executing portraits. His diary reveals that he also cultivated relationships with French émigrés and obtained portrait commissions from them.
Danloux was influenced by fashionable English portrait painters including Thomas Lawrence (1769-1830), John Hoppner (1758-1810) and, in particular, George Romney (1734-1802). In 1793 he exhibited at the Royal Academy in London, which resulted in commissions from a number of British patrons.
In 1801 Danloux returned to Paris. Throughout his final years in London, he had begun to work on large subject pictures, and this he continued to do. When his history painting The Flood was badly received at the 1802 Salon, he subsequently only painted occasional portraits, among them that of the writer the Abbé Delille and a few oil sketches of historical genre scenes.
Danloux died in Paris in 1809.