National Gallery of Art - THE COLLECTION
image of House of Père Lacroix Paul Cézanne (artist)
French, 1839 - 1906
House of Père Lacroix, 1873
oil on canvas
overall: 61.3 x 50.6 cm (24 1/8 x 19 15/16 in.) framed: 83.2 x 71.7 cm (32 3/4 x 28 1/4 in.)
Chester Dale Collection
1963.10.102
On View
From the Tour: Postimpressionism
Object 6 of 8

To brighten Cézanne's dark palette knife, his friend Camille Pissarro told him, "Never paint except with the three primary colors. . . . " The bright hues and quickly worked brushstrokes reveal here the effect of Pissarro's influence. Greens and yellows contrast in the foreground, and multihued vertical drags of the brush re–create watery reflections. Cool shadows contrast with the orange of a tiled roof. Light emphasizes the blond planes of the building, which is shaded with blues, greens, and mauves, and where broad strokes and heavier paint convey texture.

The elaborate signature and date are unusual in Cézanne's work. Perhaps he intended it for a patron or a public exhibition—at the urging of Pissarro, three of his works were included in the first impressionist show. In 1873 Cézanne moved to the village of Auvers, near Paris, where he painted this landscape. It was near Pissarro's home, and the two of them often painted side by side during 1873 and 1874. Auvers was also home to Dr. Gachet, a collector who would later care for the despairing Van Gogh. Cézanne may have hoped Gachet would purchase his work, which was ignored by the public. In the 1880s Cézanne returned to Provence in the south of France, and after inheriting his father's large estate in 1886, largely abandoned efforts to promote his work. He did not gain commercial success until he was in his 50s.

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