Landscape at Chailly Frederic Bazille Buy Art Prints Now
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Tom Gurney BSc (Hons) is an art history expert with over 20 years experience
Published on June 19, 2020 / Updated on October 14, 2023
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Bazille created this piece in the spring of 1865 when he and Monet embarked on a voyage to Fountainebleau. These artists were following a long tradition of painters ahead of them. The two lodged at the picturesque village of Chailly where Bazille painted four pieces, including two landscapes.

In the previous year, the two painters had traversed the same forest and the Normandy coast. At the time, Bazille managed to paint only one modest still life, the Soup Bowl Covers. Critics say that his lack of productivity during the visit was a result of lack of confidence despite Monet's enthusiasm to teach him about the plein-air painting technique. The following year yielded results as Bazille had mastered the technique and had started to develop a unique painting style.

Fredric created this painting during the early days of his profession. At the time, his work was greatly influenced by Barbizon School, which emphasised on capturing subjects in their actual views and painting directly from nature to reproduce forms and colours of the countryside. This style was evident in Bazille's initial painting, the Forest of Fountainbleau where he invoked a mossy green-brown palette, dark heavy tones and dense brushwork. However, when Bazille was creating the Landscape at Chailly, he deviated from this school of thought and chose to showcase sharp contrast of light and shade, and include vivid hues using rhythmic brushstrokes.

The use of brighter colours was an escape from the sombre greens and browns that dominated Barbizon School of art. Barbizon school was named after the small village of Barbizon, which was located at the edge of the Fountainebleau Forest. Bazille was among the new generation of painters who embraced the concept of en plein air instead of confining themselves to studio painting. They improved their predecessor's fascination by establishing foundations that developed the Impressionist style. It is evident in Bazille's Landscape at Chailly painting where he was more concerned about the science of the natural world and not emotion illustrated using dramatic arts by Barbizon painters.

Related Paintings - Fountainebleau Forest

When creating this painting, Bazille portrayed a random view, as though the subject was wandering in the forest while looking up the sky. He used a rough and loose brushwork style to bring out the texture of the trees, the forest floor scattered with plants and dirt and the boulders.