The Orchard near Mantes, Ca. 1850- 1860.
Oil on canvas, H. 0.24 m; W. 0.39 m
Signed lower right: COROT.
Label on the frame: Galerie Schmit / 396, rue Saint-Honoré – Paris 1er / 39 – Le Verger / Exposition / Corot / du 12 mai au 12 juin 1971.
Provenance: Collection Pierre Barbedienne.
Sale in Paris 27 April 1885, catalogue no. 10.
Private collection, France.
Alfred Robaut, L’œuvre de Corot, Paris, 1905, vol. II, no. 984 (ill.).
Corot was taught by the famous landscape painters Achille-Etna Michallon and Jean-Victor Bertin, and went on to lead an illustrious career as a landscape artist in his own right. Although he was a devoted student of paysage historique, and deeply attached to the teachings of his masters, Corot led a modernist movement of the 1830s and 1840s known as the Barbizon school. Unlike their neoclassical predecessors, Corot and his followers sought in their native France the same inspiration that their teachers had found in Italy. He introduced both realism and naturalism into landscape painting and started a modern landscape tradition in France. Corot’s art alone bridges the world of Neoclassicism to that of Impressionism. He is regarded as the central figure of 19th century plein-air painting.