Luigi Loir was born in Austria of French parentage. After studying at the Academy of Fine Arts in Parma, he went to Paris in 1863 to work in the studio of the painter and decorator Pastelot. Two years later he sent a landscape, Paysage á Villiers-sur-Seine, to the Salon where it was well received. His first entries to the Salon were “souvenirs” of Parma and views of Rouen and Dieppe, in gouache. But during the first part of his career he continued with his decorative painting, notably for the decors of Chateaux du Diable, in 1866.
In 1870, Loir distinguished himself in the military campaign of Le Bourget in the Franco-Prussian War. For the rest of his career he was to concentrate on the views of Paris with which he established his reputation. He exhibited regularly at the Sociéte des Artistes Francais winning medals in 1879 and 1889, and a gold medal at the Exposition Universelle of 1900. In 1898 he received the Légion d’honneur. He was the painter of Paris “par excellence”, seizing and interpreting “the city of light” in all her varied beauty. By dawn and dusk, in the summer or snow, he excelled at capturing the charm of Paris with a precise quality of observation. The streets, boulevards and city squares he animated with anecdotal scenes, adding poetic charm.
In addition to paintings included in Museum collections, the following are of note; Les Préparatifs de la fete forain was acquired for the salle d’honneur of the Conseil municipal of Paris, Le Marché á la Ferraille was acquired by the city of Paris and La Rue de la Pitié, vue du Val de Grace is in the Salon des Sciences á l’Hotel de Ville of Paris.