Lucien Pissarro (1863-1944)
Lucien Pissarro (1863-1944)
Lucien Pissarro (1863-1944)
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Un Rocher du Faron (Soleil) Toulon

Un Rocher du Faron (Soleil) Toulon
signed with monogram and dated '1929' (lower left)
oil on canvas
23 1⁄4 x 28 3⁄4 in. (59 x 73 cm.)
Painted in 1929.
Purchased at the 1946 exhibition by Gerald Palmer, and by descent to the present owner.
Exhibition catalogue, Twenty-Ninth Annual International Exhibition of Paintings, Pittsburgh, Carnegie Institute, 1930, no. 153, pl. 62.
Tatler, 23 June 1943, p. 376.
A. Thorold, A Catalogue of the Oil Paintings of Lucien Pissarro, London, 1983, pp. 25, 200-201, no. 463, illustrated.
London, Leicester Galleries, Lucien Pissarro, November 1929, no. 17.
Bradford, Cartwright Memorial Hall, Jubilee Exhibition, 1930, no. 106.
Pittsburgh, Carnegie Institute, Twenty Ninth Annual International Exhibition of Paintings, October - December 1930, no. 153.
London, Blackheath School of Art, Exhibition of Contemporary British Painting, February - March 1932, no. 7.
Paris, Galerie Marcel Bernheim, Pissarro et ses fils, November – December 1934, no. 22.
Manchester, Art Exhibitions Bureau tour, City Art Gallery, Paintings and Drawings by Lucien Pissarro, June - July 1935, no. 43: this exhibition travelled to Birkenhead, Williamson Art Gallery, July – August 1935; Belfast, Museum and Art Gallery, May – June 1936, no. 47; Rochdale, Corporation Art Gallery, June – July 1936 and Gateshead, Shipley Art Gallery, August 1936.
London, Ben Uri Gallery, 1938, catalogue not traced.
Yeovil, Art School, July 1941, no catalogue.
London, Leicester Galleries, Three Generations of Pissarro: Camille, Lucien, Orovida. Paintings and Drawings by Lord Methuen, June 1943, no. 59.
London, Leicester Galleries, Memorial Exhibition of Paintings and Watercolours by Lucien Pissarro, January 1946, no. 51.

Brought to you by

Alice Murray
Alice Murray Associate Director, Specialist

Lot Essay

Held in the same private collection since 1946, Un Rocher du Faron (Soleil) Toulon is a truly outstanding painting with delightfully vivid rendering of light and heat in Provence, revealing Lucien Pissarro’s mastery of colour in landscape. Painted in April 1929, it depicts the rocky outcrop of Mount Faron overlooking the city of Toulon, close to where Pissarro bought a house, Campagne Orovida, in February of that year.

Pissarro frequently visited and painted in Provence in the 1920s; by then he had lived in England for over three decades and was enjoying considerable success as part of the first generation of impressionist painters in Britain. As the eldest son of Camille Pissarro, he represented a direct link to the founders of impressionism and made a significant contribution to the evolution of British painting in the early years of the 20th Century. The influence of his style and technique can be traced through the painting of the Fitzroy and Camden Town groups, particularly in the work of Spencer Gore, Harold Gilman and James Bolivar Manson.

Pissarro’s relationship with the landscape of Provence was one of the most important and fruitful of his life. He painted Un Rocher du Faron (Soleil) Toulon after almost two months at Campagne Orovida and he was by now becoming accustomed to the new terrain while delighting in the stable light of the south of France. Pissarro almost always painted en plein air and within walking distance of where he was staying. He used small brushstrokes and rhythmic dashes of paint to capture the varying tones of light and shade; as a visual effect it recalls his earlier association with Pointillism and the influence of his contemporaries, the Divisionist painters Georges Seurat and Paul Signac, with whom he enjoyed close friendships in Paris in the 1880s. Un Rocher du Faron (Soleil) Toulon illustrates how Pissarro developed Divisionist techniques towards luminous treatment of light in open air that distinguished his landscapes throughout his life.

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