Camille Pissarro (1830-1903)
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Camille Pissarro (1830-1903)

Les carrières du Chou, Pontoise

Camille Pissarro (1830-1903)
Les carrières du Chou, Pontoise
signed and dated 'C. Pissarro. 1882' (lower right)
oil on canvas
21 3/8 x 25 7/8 in. (54.2 x 65.7 cm.)
Painted in 1882
Julie Pissarro (the artist's wife), Éragny, by descent from the artist in 1904.
Lucien Pissarro (the artist's son), London.
P. Voûte, Baarn and Amsterdam, by 1939.
E.J. van Wisselingh, Amsterdam, by whom acquired from the above in 1940.
Private collection, The Netherlands, by whom acquired from the above in 1940.
Anonymous sale, Christie's, London, 27 November 1989, lot 12.
Zen International Fine Art, Tokyo; sale, Sotheby's, New York, 13 November 1997, lot 102.
Private collection, until 2001.
Anonymous sale, Sotheby's, New York, 10 May 2001, lot 219.
Acquired at the above sale by the present owner.
E. Jacques, 'Beaux-Arts. Exposition de M. Pissarro', in L'Intransigeant, 14 May 1883. p. 2.
J. Meier-Graffe, 'Camille Pissarro', in Kunst und Künstler, September 1904, p. 484.
'Recent Art Exhibitions. Pissarro, Fantin and Others', in The Nottingham Guardian, 14 May 1920, p. 4.
F. Rutter, 'The Galleries. Camille Pissarro and the London Group', in The Sunday Times, 16 May 1920, p. 5.
'Art. A Great Impressionist', in Truth, 19 May 1920, p. 978.
G. Lecomte, Camille Pissarro, Paris, 1922, p. 64 (illustrated).
L.-R. Pissarro & L. Venturi, Camille Pissarro, son art - son oeuvre, vol. I, Paris, 1939, no. 559, p. 160 (illustrated vol. II, pl. 115).
J. Rewald, Pissarro, London, 1963 (illustrated p. 35).
F. Cachin, 'Some Notes on Pissarro and Symbolism', in Studies on Camille Pissarro, London and New York, 1986, p. 96 (erroneously referenced as Pissarro & Venturi, 1939, no. 595).
J. Rewald, Camille Pissarro, Paris and New York, 1989, p. 35 (illustrated).
J. Rewald, Camille Pissarro, London, 1991, p. 35 (illustrated).
R.R. Brettell, Pissarro and Pontoise, the Painter in a Landscape, London, 1990, p. 54 (illustrated p. 55, fig. 51).
J. Pisssarro & C. Durand-Ruel Snollaerts, Pissarro, catalogue critique des peintures, vol. II, Paris, 2005, no. 695, pp. 462-463 (illustrated p. 463).
Paris, 9 Boulevard de la Madeleine, Oeuvres de Camille Pissarro, May 1883, no. 69.
Paris, Galerie Durand-Ruel, Camille Pissarro, April 1904, no. 68.
Paris, Galerie Manzi-Joyant, Exposition rétrospective d'oeuvres de Camille Pissarro, January - February 1914, no. 46.
London, The Leicester Galleries, Memorial Exhibition of the Works of Camille Pissarro, May 1920, no. 68.
Paris, Galerie Nunès & Fiquet, Exposition de la collection de Madame Veuve Camille Pissarro, May - June 1921, no. 12.
Tokyo, Zen International Fine Art, Five Masterpieces of Impressionist Paintings, April 1991, n.n..
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Giovanna Bertazzoni
Giovanna Bertazzoni


Les carrières du Chou, Pontoise was painted in 1882 and featured in Camille Pissarro's first one-man exhibition, held the following year in Durand-Ruel's gallery in Paris. The concept of the one-man exhibition was still something of a novelty, yet this show, which featured works both from the 1870s and from his more recent, experimental period, including Les carrières du Chou, Pontoise, met with many positive reactions. Pissarro was complimented by Edgar Degas on his recent work, and Edmond Jacques' review, which singled out this painting for particular praise, was exultant: 'Yet go into 9 boulevard de la Madeleine, and you will be astounded. [...] I cannot pretend that certain pieces will not shock you. [...] But you will also experience moments of rapture. The collection is of exceptional interest and even with its defects is a delight' (E. Jacques, quoted in J. Pissarro & C. Durand-Ruel Snollaerts, Pissarro: Critical Catalogue of Paintings, Vol. I, Milan, 2005, pp. 180-81).

Les carrières du Chou, Pontoise was painted during a period when Pissarro was increasingly using small, stabbing brushstrokes of colour to render his images, prefiguring the Neo-Impressionism with which he would soon become the godfather. The experimental nature of Pissarro's paintings during this period is perhaps best illustrated by the fact that similar views of the quarries at Le Chou featured in the works of two of his young disciples during the same period: Paul Cézanne and Paul Gauguin. Indeed, a landscape by Gauguin now in the National Gallery of Canada has clearly been painted from a viewpoint only a little further behind the one that Pissarro took in this scene. Georges Manzana-Pissarro would later draw a sketch of himself working alongside Cézanne, Gauguin, Guillaumin and Pissarro at the quarries; while the difference in season between Les carrières du Chou, Pontoise and Gauguin's work shows that the two pictures were not painted at the same time, nonetheless this may be the product of one of the painting expeditions that these artists shared.