Paul Gauguin was born in Paris, France to journalist Clovis Gauguin and Alina Maria Chazal, daughter of the half-Peruvian proto-socialist leader Flora Tristan, a feminist precursor. In 1851 the family left Paris for Peru, motivated by the political climate of the period. Clovis died on the voyage, leaving three-year old Paul, his mother and sister to fend for themselves. They lived for four years in Lima with Paul's uncle and his family. The imagery of Peru would later influence Gauguin in his art.
At the age of seven, Gauguin and his family returned to France. They moved to Orléans to live with his grandfather. He soon learned French and excelled in his studies. At seventeen, Gauguin signed on as a pilot's assistant in the merchant marine to fulfill his required military service. Three years later, he joined the French navy where he stayed for two years. In 1871, Gauguin returned to Paris where he secured a job as a stockbroker. In 1873, he married a Danish woman, Mette-Sophie Gad. They had five children over the next ten years.
Our production was a postcard from paradise - wherever that is for the student. One of the best parts was that they didn't have too big of a piece to decorate. This seems daunting at any age - the pressure to fill the entire full sheet for some children takes away the fun of the project.