The modernizing influences can be seen in the vibrant color spectrum of this fall scene, particularly in the waters of the pond. The cool hues of the water stand in stark contrast to the yellows and oranges of the turning leaves. A Greco-Roman inspired sculpture of a faune in a meditative stance inhabits the foreground. This figure imbues Le Vieux faune with a sense of mystery, harkening to Le Sidaner’s Symbolist origins. Until this point in his career, the artist avoided all human presence in his work, as he “feared that [it] might disturb their muffled silence” (Camille Mauclair, op. cit., Paris, 1928, p. 31). The presence of the faune, therefore, makes this a rare example in the artist's oeuvre.
Le Sidaner's desire to escape from the urban bustle of Paris is well-documented. His choice to incorporate a classical figure in this idyllic natural scene exemplifies his yearning for a simpler time. The reflection of the foliage upon the pond just beyond the figure brings to mind Le Sidaner’s Impressionist peers, who were masters at capturing the effects of light on water. Indeed, Monet’s Giverny gardens were also north of Paris, not too distant from Le Sidaner’s home in Gerberoy. As Paul Signac stated, "Le Sidaner's entire work is influenced by a taste for tender, soft and silent atmospheres" (quoted in Yann Farinaux-Le Sidaner, op. cit., p. 31). While the sculpture in the work appears voluminous, Le Sidaner paints the rest of the scene with Divisionist brushwork. In this manner, the work is ephemeral, the specific time and place fleeting.
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