Lot 5
  • 5

Henri Jean Guillaume Martin

180,000 - 250,000 EUR
bidding is closed


  • Henri Jean Guillaume Martin
  • Vue de Saint-Cirq Lapopie
  • signed Henri Martin (lower right)
  • oil on canvas
  • 38 7/8 x 46 1/4 in.


Estate of the artist
Thence by descent to the present owner

Catalogue Note

Saint-Cirq-Lapopie is a particularly accomplished example of the views of this village painted by the artist between 1912, date at which he bought his house in the legendary village, and the end of the 1930s. Martin was certainly attracted by the same features that had seduced Andre Breton when he discovered the village in 1950, and notably by the perfect rise and leveling of the planes praised by Breton, and which is marvelously crystallized in this composition. The beautiful medieval village perched on a cliff inspired the painter many times, giving rise to his most emblematic paintings of the village seen from different angles and in different lights. Henri Martin perfectly transposes here the atmosphere and light of early spring by exploiting all the possibilities of the Divisionist technique. Unlike the works from the early years of the century, the brushwork is more spontaneous here, freer, more dynamic and the thickness of the impasto reinforces the impression of volume and perspective emanating from this monumental composition.

“Far beyond many other places – America, Europe – Saint-Cirq has laid upon me its unique enchantment: that which stays forever. I have ceased to desire myself elsewhere. I think that the secret of its poetry is related to that of certain illuminations by Rimbaud, that it is the product of the rarest equilibrium in the most perfect arrangement of planes.”
Andre Breton