Lot 237
  • 237

Louis Valtat

300,000 - 400,000 USD
301,000 USD
bidding is closed


  • Louis Valtat
  • Paysage d'Espagne
  • Stamped with the initials LV (lower right)
  • Oil on canvas


Private Collection, Europe (sold: Sotheby's, New York, May 12, 1987, lot 296)
Hilde Gerst Fine Art, New York
Acquired from the above by the present owner circa 1989


Geneva, Petit Palais, Centenaire Louis Valtat, 1969, no. 8
Düsseldorf, Städtische Kunsthalle, Von Licht zur Farbe, 1977, p. 35 

Catalogue Note

Best known for his resplendent landscapes and vivid flower compositions, Louis Valtat was to become a highly-regarded painter of the Post-Impressionist period. Having absorbed the chief tenets of classical Impressionism and Pointillism in the 1890s, Valtat was both intrigued and influenced by contemporaries such as Matisse, Marquet, Camoin, Manguin, Vlaminck, Derain, Dufy and Van Dongen, with whom he exhibited at the famous Salon d'Automne of 1905.  The present work, executed in Spain 1894, is an incredibly strong example of his post impressionist style with vivid color and strong brush work, evocative of the soon to be Fauves.

As Sarah Whitfield notes, "Louis Valtat, whose color appears to float on the surface of the canvas, is another painter somewhat loosely bracketed with the Fauves. Both Valtat, who like Matisse was born in 1869, and Seyssaud, who was two years older, belonged to the generation of painters who understood the picture surface to be primarily a flat piece of canvas covered with areas of paint" (S. Whitfield, Fauvism, London, 1991, p. 28).  These "areas of paint" were charged with evocative color in an attempt to enlighten the canvas and seduce the spectator.  The present work is a poignant example, a stunning synthesis of simplicity of form and exuberant luminosity.