Ambroise Vollard, Paris
Estate of the above
Kende Galleries, New York
Mr & Mrs Paul Tishman, New York (acquired in 1951)
Private Collection, New York (by descent from the above)
Acquired from the above by the present owner in 2007
Vienna, Kunstforum Wien & Zurich, Kunsthaus, Cézanne: Finished – Unfinished, 2000, no. 85, illustrated in colour in the catalogue
Rome, Complesso del Vittoriano, Cézanne. Il padre dei moderni, 2002, illustrated in colour in the catalogue
The Hague, Gemeentemuseum, Cézanne – Picasso – Mondriaan, 2009-10
Lionello Venturi, ‘Giunte a Cézanne’, in Commentari 2, no. 1, January-March 1951, fig. 54, illustrated p. 48
John Rewald, The Paintings of Paul Cézanne. A Catalogue Raisonné, New York, 1996, vol. I, no. 529, catalogued p. 356; vol. II, no. 529, illustrated p. 171
Richard Verdi, ‘Vienna and Zurich Cézanne’, in The Burlington Magazine, 2000, no. 1168, illustrated pp. 466, 467
Paysage d’hiver, painted circa 1885, is a wonderfully evocative composition which characterises the significant artistic developments Cézanne made during the 1880s. Emerging from the influence of Pissarro the artist’s style gradually evolved. Embedded deep within the Provençal countryside, with occasional excursions to the Île-de-France and L’Estaque, landscapes became a major part of his work. The compositional arrangement of buildings and trees is rendered here with absolute clarity. The typically earthy palette is enlivened by small patches of bright oranges and subtle blues. Renoir once remarked that, ‘Cézanne has only to place a dab of colour on a canvas for it to be interesting; it’s nothing and it’s beautiful’ (quoted in G. Rivière, Cézanne, Paris, 1933, p. 19).
Discussing the importance of the present work, and explaining its creative process from the initial compositional design laid out in pencil to the addition of colour, Birgit Schwarz writes: ‘Winter Landscape affords insights into Cézanne’s working methods […]. Cézanne established the colour composition in thin washes of oil, beginning – as can be seen in Winter Landscape – with the central motif, in this case a group of houses behind a wall, with a leafless tree in front. The colour composition was then developed in individual, loosely painted patches. Cézanne avoided filling in the outlines, whether of a wall or the side of a house, with a single, uniform layer of colour, introducing instead many individual notes of colour. Since each of these elements adjoined other areas of colour, every encounter between two tones required precise awareness of their effect on each other’ (B. Schwarz, Cézanne: Finished – Unfinished (exhibition catalogue), op. cit., p. 291).