The Prix de Rome and his years at the Villa Medici
After two unsuccessful attempts, Henner won the Grand Prix de Rome for painting in 1858 with his Adam and Eve Discovering the Body of Abel. This success led to a five- year stay in Rome, at the Villa Medici where he became a friend of the sculptor Falguière and the composer Bizet, and paved the way to his official career. He drew inspiration from the new setting of his life in his unique large Italian landscape, Rome from the Terrace of the Villa Medici, painted in 1860.
The painter visited Rome, Florence, Venice, Naples and other places, where he admired works of the Antiquity and the Italian Renaissance exhibited in museums but he also discovered a country that enchanted him with its beautiful landscapes and picturesque everyday life. Although arrived in Rome as a history painter, he also executed numerous genre scenes and small luminous landscapes.