From The Art and Popular Culture Encyclopedia
Forain was born in Reims, Marne but at age eight, his family moved to Paris. He began his career working as a caricaturist for several Paris journals but wanting to expand his horizons, enrolled at the École des Beaux Arts, studying under Jean-Léon Gérôme as well as another sculptor/painter, Jean-Baptiste Carpeaux.
In 1891 Forain married the painter Jeanne Bosc with whom he had a son, born in 1895.
Forain was greatly influenced by Honoré Daumier plus friend and artist, Edgar Degas. He participated in four Impressionist exhibitions between 1879 and 1884. In his later years, Forain created numerous scenes of the Law Courts and other Parisian institutions plus social satires on late 19th and early 20th century French life. In 1931, shortly before his death, he was made a member of the Royal Academy of Arts in London.