The aristocratic Mahmoud Said was well-travelled and highly international. Since studying painting in Paris in 1920 he took frequent trips around the Mediterranean and further afield. As accomplished in landscapes as he was in figural painting, the vistas he encountered on many of his trips were recorded in his exceptional and varied group of landscape paintings which he produced throughout his career. To escape the oppressive heat in Egypt, Mahmoud Said often spent his summers in the Lebanese mountains. There he produced a number of memorable landscapes, some of which can be seen in the Mahmoud Said Museum in Alexandria.
Bathed in the warm glow of the late afternoon sun, this beautiful mountain view in Lebanon is reminiscent of Paul Cezanne's famous views of Montaigne Sainte Victoire. Cubist tendencies can often be detected in much of Mahmoud Said's work, so it is fitting that his depiction of this imposing mountain pays homage the 19th century master, often seen as the bridge between impressionism and cubism. The colouring, composition and faceted rendering of the jagged mountain all recall Cezanne's works, yet also present are the unmistakable elements typical of Mahmoud Said's oeuvre. Dividing the painting symmetrically, Said places a massive object in the centre (in this case the mountain), its weight offset through the application of rhythmic diagonal marks Warm and cool colours are carefully balanced. Composition, tone and hue are harmonized.