Mont Sainte–Victoire and the Viaduct of the Arc River Valley, 1882–85
Paul Cézanne (French, 1839–1906)
Oil on canvas; 25 3/4 x 32 1/8 in. (65.4 x 81.6 cm)
H. O. Havemeyer Collection, Bequest of Mrs. H. O. Havemeyer, 1929 (29.100.64)
Cézanne exhibited with the Impressionists in 1874, and although he shared their plein-air approach, he sought to reveal the inner geometry of nature. He aimed "to make of Impressionism something solid and durable, like the art of museums."
The distinctive silhouette of Mont Sainte-Victoire rises above the Arc River valley near the town of Aix-en-Provence. Recent research has revealed the precise outlook recorded in this composition: Cézanne stood close to Montbriand, his sister's property, at the top of the hill just behind the house; the wall of the neighboring farmhouse is barely visible. In his later works, Mont Sainte-Victoire came to dominate the entire scene.