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French, 1856–1910


Watercolor over black chalk on paper

17.5 x 25 cm

Bequest of Blanche T. Weisberg to American Friends of the Israel Museum

Accession number:


Arts/Prints & Drawings

In 1891 Henri-Edmond Cross settled in the south of France, and from this time on the local landscape served him as fertile ground for experiments in the spirit of the Neo-Impressionists, whose ranks he soon joined. Initially, Cross's pointillism consisted of dense fields of tiny color dots, but after 1895 he began to work in broader brushstrokes, painting stains and surfaces of sharply contrasting color that were more abstract and decorative. His later works were a source of inspiration for Matisse and the Fauvists.

This particular watercolor reflects a phase in Cross's career when he was willing to sacrifice faithfulness to nature and its colors in order to achieve harmony of tones. Thus, the tree trunks are only a pretext for liquid brushstrokes to move across the paper, and the bright center of the painting does not serve as a source of light but rather as a painterly focal point emphasizing the essentially abstract composition.

From the Israel Museum publications:

Perry-Lehmann, Meira, One Hundred Works on Paper: From the Collection of The Israel Museum, Jerusalem, 1986, English / Hebrew


One Hundred Works on Paper from the Collection of the Israel Museum, Israel Museum, Jerusalem, 01/06/1986 - 30/08/1986|Back to Nature, Landscapes Drawn by Masters, Israel Museum, Jerusalem, 02/06/2013 - 06/10/2013