Maurice Galbraith Cullen
1866 - 1934
oil on canvas, circa 1903
signed and on verso titled March Sunset, Cache River, Quebec on the gallery labels and certified by Cullen Inventory #1349
23 1/4 x 28 3/4 in, 59.1 x 73 cm
Estimate: $50,000 - $70,000
Watson Art Galleries, Montreal
Laing Galleries, Toronto
Waddington Galleries, Toronto / Montreal
Kenneth G. Heffel Fine Art Inc., Vancouver
Sold sale of Fine Canadian Art, Heffel Fine Art Auction House, November 8, 2001, lot 16
Private Collection, Montreal
Sold sale of Fine Canadian Art, Heffel Fine Art Auction House, November 24, 2005, lot 153
Private Collection, Quebec City
Rosalyn Porter, The Group of Seven and Their Contemporaries, Kenneth G. Heffel Fine Art Inc., 1980, listed, titled as March Sunset, Cache River, Quebec
Kenneth G. Heffel Fine Art Inc., Vancouver, The Group of Seven and Their Contemporaries, 1980, catalogue #37
Maurice Cullen, who trained in France at the École nationale de la société des beaux-arts, was one of the earliest artists to bring an Impressionist palette and technique to the Canadian landscape. The forms in many of his early landscapes are bathed in light, and this work is no exception. Indeed, the subject of the work is reflected light – the sunset illuminating the cloud and it, in turn, being reflected in the water of the river. This work is one of many such subjects that Cullen observed on the Cache River in Quebec. As with all of his winter scenes, we can feel the intense chill in the air, and in this case the fact that most of the scene is in shadow intensifies this cold. Cullen is able through the use of atmospheric perspective to give us a clear sense of the depth of the landscape. The use of colour is carefully considered and his tones are deliberately greyed throughout the image, except for the brilliant pink cloud itself and the equally striking reflection in the water. The work is carefully constructed, with the ice breaking up in the foreground to establish our relationship to the scene, the reflection of the trees in the water to join the near and distant shores, a darker right half balancing the lighter left, and the equal areas of bright colour in sky and water balancing each other. The sense of an evanescent moment in nature quickly captured on the canvas is a tribute to Cullen's skills as a landscape painter.
On verso the work is titled March Sunset, Cache River, Quebec on the gallery labels, but the original title is Pink Cloud.
All prices are in Canadian Dollars
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