The village of Arleux is close to Arras and Douai in north-east France. In the Spring of 1871 Corot left Paris and the upheaval of the Commune to stay with his friend and biographer Alfred Robaut at Douai. In June and July they rented a cottage at Arleux, where he painted a number of views. In the foreground of this atmospheric landscape the paint has been scratched with the wrong end of the brush.
The National Gallery, Trafalgar Square, London WC2N 5DN