Raza left India for France arriving in October 1950 and recollects excitedly absorbing the thriving local scene. He was greatly influenced by the coloration and composition of the Post-Impressionists and of his early experiences in France.
"But I was not in France to do Indian miniatures! I was here to experience French art, and to live it. One of the fundamental breakthroughs for me was that I began painting in oils [...] My paintings were slowly changing: the constructions by Cezanne were haunting me now. For many years my main theme was the French landscape wherein trees and mountains, villages and churches, became important motifs." (Artist's Statement, Bindu: Space and Time in Raza's Vision, Geeti Sen, New Delhi, 1997, p. 56)
In this painting Raza captures the rolling terrain and village architecture of rural France. It soundly demonstrates the artist's perceptive rationalization of Post-Impressionism, particularly the oeuvre of Cezanne. It represents a grand scale turning point between two stages of Raza's artistic development: while the subject matter is still recognizable, color and painterly application become key elements. The artist utilizes gestural brushstrokes, vivid coloration and heavy impasto as stylistic devices which similarly hint at his later 1970s abstractions.