MARC-AURÈLE FORTIN, A.R.C.A.
LANDSCAPE WITH GREEN TREES, CIRCA 1929/1930
signed, with catalogue raisonné number A-0855
13.25 ins x 19.5 ins; 33.7 cms x 49.5 cms
At one point early in his career, Marc-Aurèle Fortin abandoned the use of watercolour out of pure frustration. Nonetheless, by the mid-twenties he had taken it up again having "finally achieved mastery of the extremely temperamental medium." Eventually, Fortin would describe his great passion for watercolor as a "mania".
In this composition, Fortin relies on a trusted arrangement of trees to the left, a repoussoir device that encourages the viewer onto a path dappled with sunlight that has pierced the trees' leafy boughs. Once on that path, we join several small figures in the distance. The mid-ground is a fertile valley dotted with fields sewn with various crops at different stages of development, delineated by the split-rail fence and the rolling hills beyond. It seems like a simple enough scene but unlike other watercolours by Fortin which sometimes rely on retouching with charcoal and pastel, this work is an entirely "pure", luminous watercolour. The result is dazzling.
Michèle Grandbois (ed.), Marc-Aurèle Fortin, The Experience of Colour, Musée national des beaux-arts du Quèbec, Quèbec, 2011, page 33, 102.
Gerard Gorce Fine Arts Inc., Montreal
Gallery Gills Saint-Pierre
Roberts Gallery Limited, Toronto
Private Collection, Ontario
Musée Marc-Aurèle Fortin, Montreal, 23 Janvier 1985 au 19 Mai 1985, no. P.198.