Posts Tagged '1872'

STUNNING PISSARRO PAINTING –AUCTION RESULTS

040L13002_6524H_reshot.jpg.thumb.385.385

The Seine at Port-Marly,  c. 1872,  PDR 236

This gorgeous Pissarro painting was auctioned yesterday at Sotheby’s. The final price was 914,850 GBP or in US $1,431,690.  How fortunate is that lucky buyer!!

See the previous blog for more information on this painting and another one painted in that same location.

PISSARRO PAINTING AT SOTHEBY’S IS A REAL PRIZE!!

040L13002_6524H_reshot.jpg.thumb.385.385The Seine at Port-Marly,  c. 1872,  PDR 236

If only I were in London this weekend to see this lovely Camille Pissarro painting which will be auctioned at Sotheby’s next week. (PDR 236)  This stunning canvas has been in private hands since it was created in 1872 and has not often been exhibited.  The pre-sale show at Sotheby’s may be the only opportunity for people like me to see it before it goes back into another private collection.

Painted when Pissarro returned to Louveciennes after the Franco-Prussian war, it is very similar to a painting in the Musée d’Orsay in Paris. (PDR 229)  That one shows a roofed washhouse built out over the river where women gathered to do the laundry.  In the Sotheby painting, the washhouse does not appear. The view suggests that the artist may have carried his easel onto the floor of the washhouse itself which puts him in the midst of the reflections on the Seine.

The entire right side of the canvas is dominated by a bathing house, where the French working class people would go to enjoy their weekends and holidays. Tucked away in a large bank of trees, it suggests leisure and pleasure. The left side of the painting reveals a strong counterpoint. Under a vast expanse of open sky, factories and barges line the other river bank, reminding us of the industrialization underway. A boat is in the center of the river, and it is impossible to tell whether he is headed back to work or rowing toward a free afternoon. How lucky the person will be who wins this beautiful prize at the Sotheby’s sale next week!

*PDR designates the numbers assigned to these paintings in PISSARRO:CRITICAL CATALOGUE (2005).

More about Pissarro’s time and paintings in Louveciennes in PISSARRO’S PLACES, to be published this April by Art Book Annex.com

AMONG THE SURVIVORS–PISSARRO’S APPLE TREES

   Apple Trees in Bloom

1870, McMaster Museum of Art, Hamilton (Ontario), Canada

PDR 176

Camille Pissarro had lived in Louveciennes only a year when he made this lovely painting, Apple Trees in Bloom. He had painted the scenes of his neighborhood and now was exploring the nearby countryside. After painting outside in deep snow that winter, he must have been delighted to see the blossoming apple trees of spring.

This peaceful scene soon became a war zone. By September, the Prussians had defeated Napoleon III at Sedan and their soldiers began to occupy France. Before the troops reached Louveciennes, Pissarro and his companion Julie fled with their two small children to Montfoucault, the home of their dear friend Ludovic Piette in the Mayenne. Later, the young family went to London for the duration of the war.

When the Prussians occupied Louveciennes they commandeered Pissarro’s house, sleeping soldiers upstairs and keeping horses on the ground floor. In the garden, they slaughtered livestock and poultry, using Pissarro’s canvases as aprons and to cover the muddy ground. A great number of Pissarro’s art works were lost or destroyed beyond repair.

The catalogue raisonné (Pissarro:Critical Catalogue, 2005) notes that this painting was bought from the artist by Paul Durand-Ruel on April 30, 1872, almost a year after Pissarro returned from London. There is no information on where this painting and other surviving canvases were during the war.

This landscape is a complex composition of lines and angles. The road is just one of several layers of colors which come to a point and vanish in a distant cluster of houses. Several apple trees march in a straight row diagonally across the lower left, their precise alignment broken by the leaning tree at the front. In the distance lies a village, perhaps Louveciennes. The apple trees serve as a screen, both concealing and revealing the countryside. Pissarro first used this type of composition the previous year, and he continued to develop his use of this device throughout his career.

Apple Trees in Bloom was donated to the McMaster Museum of Art (Hamilton, Ontario, Canada) in the mid-1980s by Dr. Herman Herzog Levy.



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