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Catherine D'ortoli

  • Painter

Originally from Marseille, Catherine was destined to have a deep passion for her birthplace, and especially the architectural heritage of her city. Her interest naturally drew her to the École Nationale Supérieure d'Architecture, where she graduated from in 1982. Three years later, Catherine became part of the Heritage Workshop, where she worked as an architect for twenty five years. Over the course of these years, she dedicated herself to the meticulous study of several buildings and edifices in Marseille, and began a significant work of architectural surveys in watercolours. Printed on boards, they were then published in the form of thematic portfolios.

Trained in meticulous techniques, Catherine discovered watercolour painting to be the perfect language for her to translate her skills, while still retaining a degree of freedom in their interpretation and execution. Catherine trusts first in her own intuition, and then in her research on her favourite artists, such as the works of the painters from Provence Jean-Baptiste Olive (1848-1936), Raphaël Ponson (1835-1904) and Georges Briata (born in 1933). Contemporary watercolour artists Jeanne Gallizia (born in 1972) and Joseph Zbukvic (born in 1952) played a key role in her technical and artistic development. Architectural details, the play of shadows and light, variations in colours are all themes that the artist has recreated through her brush.

Her artistic speciality won her, in 2004, a two-year training course in Paris that allowed her to aim for the title of heritage architect, following which she entered in the service of the Historic Heritage and Monuments of the City of Marseille. Alongside this, Catherine taught architectural rendering with watercolours at the École Nationale Supérieure d'Architecture from 2002 to 2012.


Currently this artist is only exhibited in our online gallery.

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