Paperback, 6 x 9, 142 pages
70 colour illustrations on matte paper
Published 09/2020, ISBN 9780981178066
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The French painter Henri Le Sidaner (1862–1939) chose to spend most of his life in quiet isolation, away from both Paris and the polemics of his day. He used small, distinct brushstrokes and his canvases have a luminous, almost mystical quality, but he was neither a Pointillist nor a Symbolist. When asked which school he belonged to, he replied: “None. But if you absolutely insist on categorizing me, I am an Intimist.”
This biography is the sole contemporary account of Le Sidaner’s career and now, after more than ninety years, it has finally been translated into English. Camille Mauclair discusses the artist’s youth, influences, technique, choice of subjects, as well as his particular attachment to the village of Gerberoy.
“It requires a particular taste for voluptuous pleasure to remain sitting in a garden at twilight, watching all the details as they fade away and seem to die one by one, merging into the inexorable darkness, losing their colours and even their shapes, becoming ideas of themselves. This is when the Impressionist reckons the day is done — since there is neither daylight nor chromatic effects, he can no longer paint. But this is the moment when poetic depiction begins, when everything is a spirit, a dream, a refraction in consciousness, a prayer. And it was at this moment that Le Sidaner often set to work.”
About the Author
A journalist, novelist, poet, and travel writer, Camille Mauclair (1872-1945) is best remembered today as a critic and art historian. In addition to this biography of Henri Le Sidaner, he wrote more than forty books, including works about Degas, Delacroix, Fragonard, Greuze, Monet, and Watteau.