We would like to thank Martin Dieterle and Claire Lebeau for kindly confirming the authenticity of this work.
Corot is widely regarded as the fundamental link who bridged classical traditions of French landscape painting to the modern tenets of Impressionism.
By shedding the landscape of its anecdotal qualities and incidental meaning he reduced it and, somewhat paradoxically, elevated it to the concentrated study of light and form - a practice that would occupy artists at the turn of the century and later evolve into the pure pigment of painterly abstraction. As stated in the catalogue for the 1996 Corot retrospective, "artists from Delacroix to Courbet to Renoir to Picasso. wo know Corot's work well, stubbornly held it in the highest possible regard" (John P. O'Neill, Corot, exh. cat., The Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York, 1996, p. xv).
However, Corot remains elusive to many historians and critics. While he saw his own plein-air paintings as existing outside of the canon of art history, a retrospective view says otherwise. Few works exemplify this as singularly as L'Allée Verte. It is, simply, a masterpiece - and a milestone in the development of modern art.
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