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PROPERTY FROM A FRENCH PRIVATE COLLECTION

Jean-Baptiste-Camille Corot
FRENCH
CRÉCY-EN-BRIE - ROUTE DANS LA CAMPAGNE
Estimate
80,000100,000
LOT SOLD. 125,000 GBP
JUMP TO LOT
10

PROPERTY FROM A FRENCH PRIVATE COLLECTION

Jean-Baptiste-Camille Corot
FRENCH
CRÉCY-EN-BRIE - ROUTE DANS LA CAMPAGNE
Estimate
80,000100,000
LOT SOLD. 125,000 GBP
JUMP TO LOT

Details & Cataloguing

19th Century European Paintings

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London

Jean-Baptiste-Camille Corot
1796 - 1875
FRENCH
CRÉCY-EN-BRIE - ROUTE DANS LA CAMPAGNE

The authenticity of this work has been confirmed by Martin Dieterle and Claire Lebeau.

Provenance

M. Decan, by 1875
Boussod, Valadon et Cie, Paris
Saint-Albin, Paris
Helen Sanderson, New York (in 1918)
Charles M. Platt, New York
John Levy Galleries, New York
Richard V. Nuttall, Pittsburg (his sale: Parke Bernet, New York, 21 May 1952, lot 28)
Ralph E. Fair, Jr., New York (purchased at the above sale)
Sale: Sotheby's Parke Bernet, New York, 2 May 1974, lot 201
Dr. J.J. Gonzalez Gorrondona, Jr., New York
Sale: Sotheby's, New York, 28 February 1990, lot 16
Private collection, Japan (purchased at the above sale)
Sale:  Hôtel Drouot, Paris, 11 October 2000, lot 2
Purchased at the above sale by the present owner

Exhibited

Paris, École des Beaux Arts, Exposition de l'Œuvre de Corot, 1875, no. 195 (as Chemin de fer à Crécy)

Literature

Alfred Robaut, L'Œuvre de Corot: catalogue raisonné et illustré, Paris, 1965, vol. III, p. 236, no. 1994, catalogued; p. 237, illustrated with a drawing by Robaut

Catalogue Note

Painted circa 1870-72.

Roads and paths are recurring motifs in Corot's work, and from his youth the artist appears to have been particularly fond of lanes that ascend and descend. In contrast to the increasing number of souvenirs Corot painted in the 1860s - silvery poetic reminiscences of a particular place distilled into a picture - the present work is very much set in time and place and, if not painted in the open air, at least based on a plein air sketch made on the spot, in this case a country road in Brie. The immediacy of the observed light and tonalities is abundantly evident.

For Corot, form and tonality, the effect, came before detail. Seeing Corot and Courbet work side by side at Saintes in 1862, critic Théodore Duret wrote, 'Corot and especially Courbet aspire to render the appearance of nature without adding anything. They work at getting down with precision the things seen, but, since they see them as true artists...they grasp the characteristic aspects and ignore the details, the secondary traits.' (Duret, quoted in Roger Bonniot, Gustave Courbet en Saintonge 1862-3, 1973, p. 103.)

Indeed it was works such as the present one that prompted young painters, Berthe Morisot among them, to elicit Corot's instruction and approval. Pissaro described himself as a pupil of Corot in the Salon brochures as a measure of respect, and others did the same. Corot was adopted by the proponents of the New Painting; Émile Zola, Théodore Duret, and Edmond Duranty, the key writers on the new school, considered Corot a progenitor of Impressionism. And indeed at one point or another in the course of the 1860s, Monet, Renoir, and Sisley each experimented with some of Corot's techniques.

19th Century European Paintings

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London