Adolphe Monticelli / Figures in the Woods / c. 1857-1862Adolphe Monticelli
Figures in the Woods
c. 1857-1862

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Creator Name: Monticelli, Adolphe Joseph Thomas
Creator Nationality: European; French
Creator Role: Artist
Creator Dates/Places: 1824 - 1886

From 1842 to 1846 Adolphe-Joseph-Thomas Monticelli studied painting at the École Municipale de Dessin in Marseilles, then directed by Émile Loubon (1809-1863), who encouraged his students to paint directly from nature. Monticelli moved to Paris in 1846 and entered the École des Beaux-Arts under Delaroche (q.v.). He spent his free time in the Louvre copying works by such painters as Veronese (1528-1588), Rubens (1577-1640), Rembrandt (1606-1669), Watteau (1684-1721), Fragonard (1732-1806), and Delacroix (q.v.). In the following years he would divide his time between Marseilles and Paris. He traveled throughout Provence with Guigou (q.v.), and together they painted the surrounding landscapes and villages. In Paris in 1856 he met Diaz de la Peña (q.v.), who encouraged him to use bolder colors and a heavier texture. Under the influence of Diaz, he also began adding small figures in his landscapes. That same year Monticelli returned to Marseilles, where he would remain for seven years. He again made landscape studies while earning money with his portraits. When he moved back to Paris in 1863, he specialized in depicting the fashionable society in lush landscapes, recalling the works of Watteau. He enjoyed some popularity within these circles because of the revival of interest in the rococo style. He also encountered some impressionist painters. He returned to Marseilles when the Franco-Prussian War (1870-71) broke out and remained there for the rest of his life, creating his most mature works. He painted with Cézanne (q.v.) in the areas around Aix and Marseilles. In his late landscapes he experimented with paint texture, using thick impasto on a bare canvas to create a dynamic surface. These experiments were to leave a strong impression on van Gogh (q.v.), who saw them at the Galerie Delarebeyrette in Paris in 1886, the year of Monticelli's death. Around that time, Monticelli already had several emulators copying his work, which explains the abundant production of fake Monticellis that have since invaded the art market.

Gender: M
Creator Birth Place: Marseilles, 14 October 1824
Creator Death Place: Marseilles, 29 June 1886
Creator Name-CRT: Adolphe Monticelli
Title: Figures in the Woods
Title Type: Primary
View: Full View
Creation Start Date: 1857
Creation End Date: 1862
Creation Date: c. 1857-1862
Object Type: Paintings
Classification Term: Painting
Materials and Techniques: oil on fabric
Dimensions: Unframed: 46.2cm x 37.5cm
Inscriptions: signed lower left: Monticelli
AMICA Contributor: The Cleveland Museum of Art
Owner Location: Cleveland, Ohio, USA
ID Number: 1916.1054
Credit Line: Gift of Mr. and Mrs. J. H. Wade
Provenance: S. P. Avery, New York. Bought by Jeptha H. Wade in 1893, for $875. Given to the CMA in 1916.
AMICA ID: CMA_.1916.1054
AMICA Library Year: 2002
Media Metadata Rights: Copyright, The Cleveland Museum of Art

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