Private Collection, Belgium Acquired from the above by the present owner
(Probably) Brussels, La Libre Esthéique: Catalogue de la dixième Exposition à Bruxelles, 1903, no. 274, p. 38
Henri Ottmann worked in Brussels at the beginning of the 20th century. It was here at the Salon of Free Aesthetics in 1903 that he first exhibited three views of the Luxembourg station, painted in different weather conditions (wind, frost, fog). Throughout the series the artist’s palette is similar to that of the early Impressionists, particularly Renoir and Monet by whom Ottman was hugely influenced. Indeed the motif of the signal rising directly out of the frame at the front of the composition is taken directly from Monet’s La gare Saint-Lazare, Les signaux, 1877 (Hanover, Niedersachsisches Landesmuseum). The sister picture to the present lot is in the permanent collection of the Musée d’Orsay, Paris. The third version was formerly in the collection of Sir Sean Connery and was sold Sotheby’s, New York, 8th November 2006, lot 241 where it set the world record for the artist.
The canvas is strip lined. Inspection under UV light reveals minor scattered spots of retouching notably in the sky and along the lower edge. The surface has a stable craquelure in the sky and to the pale pigments, the centre of the composition shows a very faint stretcher-bar mark. There are minor pigment losses at the extreme edges due to frame abrasion. This work is in overall good condition. "In response to your inquiry, we are pleased to provide you with a general report of the condition of the property described above. Since we are not professional conservators or restorers, we urge you to consult with a restorer or conservator of your choice who will be better able to provide a detailed, professional report. Prospective buyers should inspect each lot to satisfy themselves as to condition and must understand that any statement made by Sotheby's is merely a subjective, qualified opinion. Prospective buyers should also refer to any Important Notices regarding this sale, which are printed in the Sale Catalogue. NOTWITHSTANDING THIS REPORT OR ANY DISCUSSIONS CONCERNING A LOT, ALL LOTS ARE OFFERED AND SOLD AS IS" IN ACCORDANCE WITH THE CONDITIONS OF BUSINESS PRINTED IN THE SALE CATALOGUE."