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Achille-Etna Michallon, A Tree

Key facts
Full title A Tree
Artist Achille-Etna Michallon
Artist dates 1796 - 1822
Date made about 1816
Medium and support Oil on paper
Dimensions 30.5 × 24 cm
Inscription summary Inscribed
Acquisition credit The Gere Collection, on long-term loan to the National Gallery
Inventory number L856
Location On loan: Gere Collection Paintings to the Ashmolean (2024 - 2026), The Ashmolean Museum of Art and Archaeology, Oxford, UK
Image copyright The Gere Collection, on long-term loan to the National Gallery, © Private collection 2000. Used by permission
Collection Main Collection
A Tree
Achille-Etna Michallon

In his 'Eléments de perspective' of 1800, Michallon's teacher Pierre-Henri de Valenciennes advised his students to make oil sketches of beautiful trees.

In this sketch Michallon has depicted an ancient tree trunk. The bark is composed of countless quick strokes of colour that suggest its rough texture, while its gnarled branches twist and curl dramatically.

On the reverse of the sheet is a painting of a farmhouse set against a row of trees with a cloud-filled sky above.

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