23 April 2012
Paul Désiré Trouillebert (French, 1829-1900)
Relèvement du chemin de fer de ceinture, Station du Bel Air et rue Montempoivre
signed 'Trouillebert' (lower left); inscribed and dated 'La station du Bel air a la rue Montempoivre/1888' (on the reverse)
oil on canvas
15 x 22 in. (38.1 x 55.9 cm.)
Painted in 1888.
with Galerie Watteau, Paris.
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G. Pillement, Les pré-impressionnistes, Neuilly, 1974, p. 153, no. 156.
C. Marumo, T. Maier and B. Müllerschön, Paul Désiré Trouillebert, Catalogue Raisonné de l'oeuvre peint, Stuttgart, 2004, p. 280, no. 213.
The modern city was the artistic muse of the French Impressionists and their contemporaries. The Barbizon School trained Paul Désiré Trouillebert was among the artists who found inspiration in Paris' industrial surroundings. In the present painting, Trouillebert takes as his subject the Bel Air train station then undergoing renovations. Such a scene, which would have been an inconceivable subject for artists earlier in the century, offered Trouillebert a means of exploring the avant-garde theme of urban industrialization. Trouillebert adds a touch of softness to what could otherwise be a cold portrait of modernity by including a mother and child holding hands in the foreground and rendering his composition in pastel colors.
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