Paysage (Landscape)

EUGENE CARRIERE (1849-1906) Biography

Paysage (Landscape) (France, c.1898 - 1900)

Oil on canvas laid on board
Signed Eugène Carrière lower right

Dimensions

44.00cm high
51.00cm wide
(17.32 inches high)
(20.08 inches wide)
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Provenance

Gabriel Séailles
Jean Séailles
Roland, Browse and Delbanco, bought in 1961
The Roland Collection

Literature

Rodolphe Rapetti, Symbolism, Flammarion, 2005, plate 157, illustrated page 240
Rodolphe Rapetti, Veronique Milin-Dumesnil, Alice Bourgoin-Lamarre, Catalogue raisonné des peintures d'Eugène Carrière, Gallimard, Paris

Exhibition History

Turin, Museo Civico, Il sacro e il profano nell'arte dei simbolisti, June-August 1969, number 200, illustrated page 177
Birmingham, City Museum and Art Gallery, Forty Pictures from the Roland Collection, April 1974, number 6
London, Camden Arts Centre, The Roland Collection, September-October 1976
Rye Art Gallery, Fifty Works from the Roland Collection, July-August 1977
Rochdale Art Gallery, Seventy Works from the Rolland Collection, July 1978
Yarow Bede Gallery, Sixty Works from the Roland Collection, April-May 1980
Newcastle Polytechnic, August 1980
Bury St Edmunds Art Gallery, December 1980
University of London Arts Centre, April-June 1981
Harlow Playhouse Gallery, Twenty-five Works from the Roland Collection, October-November 1981

Description / Expertise

Carrière’s landscapes are rare and were almost unknown before his exhibition of twenty-seven works at the Galerie Bernheim-Jeune in 1901. Most of these are, as James Bantens suggests, inspired by the countryside around the foothills of the Pyrenées near Pau where the artist and his family spent various winters from 1896-1902.(1)

In December of 1901, Carrière wrote to his friend Raymond Bonheur: I cannot tire of looking, of delighting in my eyes. Waves of vitality overwhelm me. I feel as if I am living abundantly and I become one in spirit with this atmosphere of ecstasy born of serene logic; theses beautiful undulations of terrain, these beautiful trees which embroider the moving heavens with living arabesques, the lovely supple carpet of deep, dark green, the sound of waters, their transparency, the speed with which they vanish and escape from us with long trails in recurring patterns … (2)

Inspired by the swirling, turbulent vapours in Turner’s canvases and the misty forest glades of the Barbizon school, Carrière sought to express in his landscapes animated energies and elegant art-nouveau arabesques. In Paysage the sinuous rhythmic branches of a tree cascading over a path are describe by a few seemingly spontaneous brushes of paint.

Carrière also felt that humanity was reflected in the landscape; for example, the grace of a rolling hill might mirror the elegant features of a face (3) or the flowing of a stream might echo the journey of life from birth to death.(4) He advised his son Jean-René to study the transformations of the seasons as a source of inspiration for his sculpture: Seek to understand the beauty and lavish gifts of nature and take a pattern by its energy and bounty. Every season has its beauty and we see nature change with the task it carries out each day. (5)

(1) Robert James Bantens, Eugène Carrière, The Symbol of Creation, Kent Fine Art 1990, page 84
(2)Quoted by Robert James Bantens, page 89
(3)Gabriel Seailles, Eugène Carrière, L’homme et l’artiste, Revue de Paris, 3 (1899), pages 162-3 recalls Carrière describing to him a train journey where, after studying the landscape rushing past, he had turned to a woman in the carriage and saw in her pure mouth … repeated all that he had just seen and admired.
(4) Carrière once described: The sound of waters, their transparency, the speed with which they vanish and escape from us with long trails in recurring patterns, as we ourselves come and disappear, leaving the same wakes of departed to the newly arrived. (Eugène Carrière, Ecrits et lettres choisies, Paris: Société du Mercure de France, 1907, page 204)
(5) Marborough Fine Art, Eugène Carrière, London 1970, page 15