12 Paintings of the streets of Paris in the 19th C, by Jean Béraud, Eugène Galien-Laloue, Edouard Henri Leon Cortès, Antoine Blanchard, Gustave Loiseau, with footnotes

Gustave Loiseau, 1865 – 1935
Rue Clignancourt, Paris, on 14th July, ca. 1925

Oil on canvas
23 7/8 by 19 5/8 in., 60.8 by 50 cm
El Museo Nacional Thyssen-Bornemisza

Here Gustave Loiseau chose to paint an area of Paris he had been familiar with for a long time. In 1887, when he had decided to devote himself to painting, Gustave Loiseau had settled in Montmartre, in rue de Ravignan. Rue Clignancourt is only a few steps away, at the foot of the hill it borders to the east. To describe it, the artist placed himself in the corner of the street and of boulevard de Rochechouart, where a brasserie now stands. The area, which is always very busy due to the nearby Tati stores, has changed very little. At the crossroads visible in the foreground, the cars have become more numerous than the strollers, and on the right a newspaper kiosk has replaced the old roundabout.

But here again we can appreciate the precision with which the artist observed and recorded the topography of the area. We can easily recognise every detail transcribed on the canvas: the slightly chaotic succession of building façades of different periods and styles, as well as the chimneys and skylights that punctuate the buildings, are immediately identifiable. Flags liven up the scene and dot it with the colours blue, white and red. The crowd has invaded the boulevard, and the bright and clear light is that of a summer day in Paris. More on this painting

French Post-Impressionist painter Gustave Loiseau is best remembered for his scenes of evocative landscapes and bustling Paris streets. The artist used latticed brushstrokes to depict fleeting moments, blending the Impressionist pursuit of naturalistic depiction with a more modern desire for painterly expression.

Loiseau was born on October 3, 1865 in Paris. In his youth, he was apprenticed to a decorator, but soon received an inheritance from his grandmother, which allowed him to pursue his artistic passions. He enrolled at the École nationale supérieure des Arts Décoratifs, where he studied life drawing, but left after a year after quarreling with an instructor. He set out for the riparian vistas of Pont-Aven, where he befriended other artists including Paul Gauguin and Émile Bernard. There, he developed his signature approach to landscape painting, which involved painting directly from nature (en plein air) and using an idiosyncratic cross-hatching technique (en treillis) to convey subtleties of light and atmosphere. Loiseau took part in the 1890 Impressionists exhibition and from 1893 showed at the Salon des Indépendants. While Paris remained his home and his most frequent subject, he returned to Pont-Aven several times, and also visited coastal Normandy and the various tributaries of the Seine. In the 1920s, he added still lives of flowers, fruits and fish to his repertoire. He died in Paris on October 10, 1935.

Today, Loiseau’s work is represented in the collections of the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York, the Museo Nacional Thyssen-Bornemisza in Madrid and the Tokyo Fuji Art Museum, among many other world institutions. More on Gustave Loiseau

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Author: Zaidan Art Blog

I search Art History for Beautiful works that may, or may not, have a secondary or unexpected story to tell. I then write short summaries that grow from my research. Art work is so much more when its secrets are exposed

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