Mont Sainte-Victoire and the Viaduct of the Arc River Valley

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Mont Sainte-Victoire and the Viaduct of the Arc River Valley
Mont Sainte-Victoire and the Viaduct of the Arc River Valley
Artist Paul Cézanne
Year 1882 (1882)—1885 (1885)
Medium Oil-on-canvas
Dimensions 65.5 cm × 81.7 cm (25.8 in × 32.2 in)
Location Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York
Owner Metropolitan Museum of Art

Mont Sainte-Victoire and the Viaduct of the Arc River Valley is an oil painting on canvas completed by the French artist Paul Cézanne between 1882 and 1885. It depicts Montagne Sainte-Victoire and the valley of the Arc River, with Cézanne's hometown of Aix-en-Provence in the background. Once owned by the art collectors and patrons Henry and Louisine Havemeyer, the painting was bequeathed to the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York after the latter's death in 1929.

Description[edit]

The Mont Sainte-Victoire and the Viaduct of the Arc River Valley was painted from 1882 to 1885, and was completed 21 years before Cézanne's artistic career finished.[1] Cézanne began working on impressionism in his artworks in the late 19th century, nearing the end of his career, away from his post-impressionist former paintings. A later example of this can be seen in The Card Players.[2] These mainly included still lifes and landscapes such as Mont Sainte-Victoire and the Viaduct of the Arc River Valley. His aim was "to make of Impressionism something solid and durable, like the art of museums."[3] It was painted in the 'mature' period of Cézanne's work.[4]

The Mont Sainte-Victoire and the Viaduct of the Arc River Valley was a bequest to the Metropolitan Museum of Art by Henry Osborne Havemeyer and his wife Louisine Waldron Elder Havemeyer. After Henry died in 1907, the work passed to Louisine; it was donated to the museum following her death in 1929 as part of the Havemeyer collection of 142 artworks.[5]

The painting depicts the Montagne Sainte-Victoire, which dominates the landscape of his native city of Aix-en-Provence (southern France). The city is visible in the distance, far back from the valley of the Arc River.[6][7] Moreover, this painting depicts the railway bridge on the Aix-Marseille line at the Arc River Valley and the train which runs on it.[8]

It is 65.5 cm × 81.7 cm (25.8 in × 32.2 in) in size, one of Cézanne's smallest works in his artistic career.[9] Cézanne depicted the same mountain several other times, including in Mont Sainte-Victoire seen from Bellevue, in Mont Sainte-Victoire with Large Pine, in Plain by Mont Sainte-Victoire, and in paintings titled simply Mont Sainte-Victoire in the holdings of the Courtauld Institute of Art in London and the National Gallery of Scotland in Edinburgh. Mont Sainte-Victoire and the Viaduct of the Arc River Valley was painted near the end of his working career.[1] [10]

In this painting, Cézanne explores the creation of depth using layers to build up a set of horizontal planes that draw the eye into the view.[2] In 1989, this work was described as one of Cézanne's greatest.[11][according to whom?]

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b Rewald, John. Cézanne and America: Dealers, Collectors, Artists, and Critics, 1891–1921. Princeton: Princeton University Press, 1989.
  2. ^ a b Voorhies, James. "Paul Cézanne (1839–1906)". Heilbrunn Timeline of Art History. Metropolitan Museum of Art. October 2004. Retrieved 30 June 2012.
  3. ^ "Paul Cézanne: Mont Sainte-Victoire and the Viaduct of the Arc River Valley (29.100.64)". In Heilbrunn Timeline of Art History. New York: The Metropolitan Museum of Art, 2000. Uploaded December 2008. Retrieved 30 June 2012.
  4. ^ "Cezanne, 1878-1890 (20/1)". Impressionists Gallery. Retrieved 30 June 2012. 
  5. ^ Weitzenhoffer, Frances. The Havemeyers: Impressionism Comes to America (Harry N. Abrams Publishers, New York). 1986. pp. 251—252.
  6. ^ Mont Sainte-Victoire. s885-i887. 2534 x 32' s inches. The H. 0. Havemeyer Collection, Bequest of Mrs. H. 0. Havemeyer, 29.100oo.6. Retrieved 30 June 2012.
  7. ^ Salinger, Margaretta M. (Summer 1968). "Windows Open to Nature". The Metropolitan Museum of Art Bulletin. Washington, D.C.: The Metropolitan Museum of Art. 27 (1): 1–4. doi:10.2307/3258395. 
  8. ^ Tomoki Akimaru (2012), "Cézanne and the Steam Railway (3): His Railway Subjects in Aix-en-Provence".
  9. ^ "Mont Sainte-Victoire and the Viaduct of the Arc River Valley". The Metropolitan Museum of Art. Retrieved 30 June 2012. 
  10. ^ Rewald, John. Cézanne: A Biography. New York: Abrams, 1986.
  11. ^ Harris, Nathaniel (1989). The Art of Cézanne. New York: Gallery Books. ISBN 9780831712242.