1853, Javerlhac (France) - 1914, Venise (Italy)
Until recently Fernand Desmoulin’s biography pictured him only as a friend of famous personalities and celebrated writers ; he was a drawer and an engraver typical of his time, looking for commissions, collecting honors and medals. Now we can add a new chapter, thanks to the recent discovery of a set of drawings accompanied by about four hundred pages of writings dictated by the spirits. At the age of fifty, Fernand Desmoulin fell under the influence of spiritualism. Between 1900-1902, he produced mediumistic works radically different from his previous creation. These are liberated and inventive drawings, created spontaneously and characterized by a certain form of automatic expression or obediance to injunctions.
The case of Fernand Desmoulin can be compared with some of his contemporaries, such as Victorien Sardou, Léon Petitjean or Hélène Smith, who became also, for some time, the instrument of their own unconscious. It is not surprising that André Breton, who appreaciated their productions, was also interested in the case of Fernand Desmoulin.