GUILLAUMIN Armand
( 1841-1927). French painter; born and died in Paris. Although he exhibited with the Impressionists from 1874 on, and was a close friend of Monet, Pissarro and Cézanne -- the latter copied one of his landscapes -- and the teacher of Signac, Guillaumin was able to withstand all influences. Barge-filled quays and landscapes of the Creuse Valley are frankly depicted by this Parisian who, whenever he touched the soil, seemed to recover the ruggedness of his peasant ancestors, whose stature and direct gaze he inherited. It can easily be imagined that his occasional abuse of reds, violets and mauves, and his raucous tone, which only just avoided commonness, as well as the absence of certain transitions in colour, shocked the public of 1874. With these raservations, how can one fail to admire the authentic and joyous lyricism that accompanies the river in its course, and gilds the woods with the autumn sun? Few of the landscape painters at the end of the nine. teenth century were so straightward, so free from sentimentality, or so frankly earthy. While his work is uneven, and certain views of Agay and Le Trayas are rather harsh, some of his Sédelle valleys and impressions of autumn seem to foreshadow Cézanne. The tone of many of his portraits in pastel (he excelled in this medium) and of his still lifes is that of a virile painter who stands high above the secondary Impressionists with whom he has too often been confused. Moreover, towards the end of his life his an came singularly close to that of the Fauves.
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