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Twilight View over the Paris Rooftops. Oil on paper, mounted on cardboard. 9.6 x 15.8 cm.
The genre and history painter, Camille Bellanger, studied under Alexander Cabanel and William Bouguereau and was thus trained by the leading representatives of his guild. Bellanger received his first award at the Paris Salon of 1875 and subsequently exhibited his charming genre pictures there every year; their refined colourism and attractive method of composition put them in a different category from the average entries.
Our soft-coloured little plein-air study reveals a more informal and personal aspect of his talent. The sketch was probably dashed off from the window of the artist’s lodgings or studio and is notable for its succinctness and atmospheric density. The backlight brings out the contours of a typical Paris rooftop scene set against the splendid evening sky. The artist achieves maximum expressiveness and colouristic refinement using only a modicum of means. With the artist’s faded stamped signature at the top left (Lugt 3783).