His travels to Italy further enhanced the Christian influence on his painting, subjecting him to the great Italian frescos of the 14th and 15th centuries. Annoncoation aux glycines, painted in Oriveto, exudes a warm and spiritual atmosphere with the lilac wisteria framing the two figures in the centre. The colours employed are flat and patterned and arranged in a certain order, stemming from the art of Paul Gauguin who Denis revered. Comprising a mixture of vibrant and subtle tones, these harmonies demonstrated in the present work became the hallmarks of the Nabis style.
In 1890, when Denis was not yet twenty years old, he wrote in his first published article 'Definition du Néo-traditionnisme' one of the most famous statements about Modern art: ‘Remember that a painting, before it is a war horse, a female nude or some little genre scene, is primarily a flat surface covered with colours arranged in a certain order" (quoted in Thérèse Barruel, "The New Theories", Maurice Denis, exhibition catalogue Musée des Beaux-Arts, Lyon, 1994, p. 116).
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