Le Bois sacré
The Sacred Grove

Pierre Puvis de Chavannes (1824 1898)

Date
ca. 1883
Medium
Oil on cardboard, mounted on canvas
Dimensions
Height: 39 cm
Width: 65 cm
Inscription
Marked in the lower center: LE BOIS SACRE
Inventory Number
1962Ma054
Acquisition
Purchased in 1962
Other meta informationen
Study for the staircase mural “Le Bois Sacré cher aux arts et aux muses” – “The Sacred Grove beloved of the arts and muses”, 1884–1886, Musée des Beaux-Arts Lyon

Between 1884 and 1886 the Symbolist painter Pierre Puvis de Chavannes painted this staircase decoration entitled “The Sacred Grove beloved of the arts and muses” for the Musée des Beaux-Arts in Lyon. Even this preparatory study in the Clemens Sels Museum Neuss shows how much the artist followed classical role models in his monumental works. The painting is a scene with classicistic figures in an idealized landscape and expresses nostalgia for the longgone world of the Arcadia of antiquity, the happy place of the Golden Age when humankind lived in harmony with nature. Puvis de Chavannes's anti-impressionist manner of painting – his idealized contour line and the rhythm of his compositions – had a great influence on the next generation of artists, especially the group Les Nabis.

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