Spring in Brittany

Paul Sébillot French

Not on view

Sébillot’s landscapes reflect his passion for his native region of Brittany in northern France. The crucifix-like forms of the trees in this work evoke popular notions of deep-rooted, unsullied Breton spirituality. During a rainy painting expedition in 1877, the artist spent time documenting traditional stories told by local peasants—an experience that inspired his later career as a scholar of French folklore. Sébillot’s son sent this picture on the Merci Train that toured the United States in 1949, filled with gifts from French citizens grateful for American aid in the wake of World War II.

Spring in Brittany, Paul Sébillot (French, Matignon 1843–1918 Paris), Oil on wood

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