Trees in the Park at Saint-Cloud

This oil sketch on canvas is an early work by Paul Huet, one of the leading landscape painters of 19th-century France. Whilst studying at the Ecole des Beaux-Arts, he often visited the former royal park at Saint-Cloud, just outside Paris, to make sketches of magnificent groups of trees.

This is a lively example of his work from that period, and the first of his paintings to enter the collection. The rapid brush strokes, painted in vivid shades of green, anticipate the style of the Impressionists. Unfinished, the painting stops abruptly on the right side, emphasising its boldness and vitality.

Huet was a great admirer of Constable and he played a central role in the French appreciation of British landscape painting. He was a friend and early scholar of Delacroix, and is thought to have painted the landscape background of his portrait of Louis-Auguste Schwiter.

Key facts

Artist dates
Full title
Trees in the Park at Saint-Cloud
Date made
about 1820
Medium and support
Oil on canvas
37.6 x 55.5 cm
Inscription summary
Acquisition credit
Presented by the Lishawa Family in memory of Kate (Lishawa), 2005
Inventory number
Location in Gallery