Edmond is the second son of the silk merchant Antoine Tapissier and Benoite-Angélique Towex-Comte. Antoine Tapissier who stayed widower put his sons in the Collège des Chartreux in Lyon. There, the two best friends of Edmond were Léon Perrin and Charles Balay who will become also painters. This friendship will last as long as their lives.
In 1879, Edmond is 18 years old, he’s an elegant and cultured young man who is seeking for his path. To buy some time, he chose to volunteering and before his integration he followed classes with the painter Chatigny who was the student of Picot and Chenavard. Chatigny knew Ingres, and was friend with Henner, Bertrand, Courbet and Manet.
1882 was the year of the drawing from nature learning and the first mural decorations. The following year he leaves for Paris and dedicates himself to the copies of the Italian and Flemish old masters. From 1883, the newspaper starts to speak about him and recognize that “there is hope”. Settled in the hôtel des Beaux-arts, he works on the mornings in a small workshop on the rue de Seine and follows during the afternoon the Académie Colarossis’ classes which he will quite in 1885 for the Académie Julian. During the Autumn 1887, he integrates the Ecole des Beaux Arts and enters Cababnel and Cormon’s workshops. After the death of the later in 1889, Gustave Moreau was named official professor. Tapissier made his first exhibition in the Salon on this same year. It’s in the period of the portraits tainted with symbolism that he’s doing his debuts. He’s received by Puvis de Chavanne to the Society des Artistes Français in 1891. On the same year he decorates the chapel in Saint Étienne and composed there three large scenes of 3 meters, giving him appetite and knowledge for the large compositions.
During Summer 1893, Tapissier leaves for the Midi region and makes there the studies of his paintings Sapho, Les jeunes filles de Lesbos and Les Sirènes. It’s thanks to this last painting that Tapissier knows the true success in the Salon des Artistes français in 1896. In this period was also made Le songe d’une nuit d’été.
In the Salon of 1900, he exhibits Tentation de Bouddha showing the possible influence of Gustave Moreau, the painting very looked at is not really understood. 1901 marked the year of the researches « modern style » which makes him meet with Geoffroy, administrator of the Gobelins. In charge of the mural decoration for a restaurant in Saint-Petersburg, he leaves for Russia where he creates the panels projects and executes them in Paris.
Married in 1902, no women has inspired him as much his wife. Portraits more charming than one another will be painted during the 42 years that their union will last. Some beautiful compositions appeared of this production such as Le Rompeur de lance, La coupe de Circé, Le triomphe du Printemps.
In 1919, he brings from his travels with Charles Fouqueray and Auguste Matisse in Italy, Greece and Middle East some watercolors that show his new inspirations. The style of these painters is a mix between the solidity of the classic disposition and the Impressionist freedom. At the same time he creates many cartons of an extraordinary quality to be weave in the Gobelins, Aubusson, and Beauvais such as La Fontaine de Jouvence, important tapestry project for the Gobelins.