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Camille Pissarro, The Côte des Bœufs at L'Hermitage

Key facts
Full title The Côte des Bœufs at L'Hermitage
Artist Camille Pissarro
Artist dates 1830 - 1903
Date made 1877
Medium and support Oil on canvas
Dimensions 114.9 × 87.6 cm
Inscription summary Signed; Dated
Acquisition credit Presented by C.S. Carstairs to the Tate Gallery through the Art Fund, 1926; transferred, 1950
Inventory number NG4197
Location Room 41
Collection Main Collection
The Côte des Bœufs at L'Hermitage
Camille Pissarro

This wooded hillside, called the Côte des Bœufs, was close to Pissarro’s home in the hamlet of L’Hermitage, near the market town of Pontoise, where he lived for most of the time between 1866 and 1883.

Although Pissarro was a leading Impressionist, this painting signals his move away from the fleeting atmospheric effects of Impressionism. Instead, he is primarily focused here on the structure of the composition, which he has carefully arranged using counterbalanced vertical and horizontal lines. The thickly applied paint and densely worked surface, which he built up with multiple small brushstrokes, is also quite distinct from the swift fluid brushwork and sketch-like qualities of Impressionism.

This shift to a more structured version of Impressionism foreshadows the concerns of the next generation of Post-Impressionist artists, particularly Cezanne and Seurat.

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