LANDSCAPE WITH WINDMILLS
First quarter of 19th century
Oil on canvas
49 x 59,5 cm (h x w)
Inscription on frame on back: "Georges Michel"
| 5 490 €
The composition of the painting shows a section of the landscape near Paris with impressive skies. Three figures are on the path in the center, with windmills and a farmhouse behind them on the horizon. There is an indication of a body of water be in the background.
An important predecessor of the Barbizon School, French painter George Michel was practically unknown as a painter during his lifetime. Born in Paris, his first teacher was a professor of history painting named Leduc; later Michel studied under Nicolas-Antoine Taunay. Although he exhibited at the Paris Salon, he failed to achieve recognition during his lifetime and earned his living as a copyist and restorer specializing in Dutch paintings. Most of his work concentrates on rural landscapes in the area around Paris. He was influenced by Dutch landscape painters such as Jacob van Ruisdael and Meindert Hobbema. He was forgotten for decades after his death, and the first large exhibition of his work was presented in 1927. Today his works are found in museums around the world, including the Metropolitan Museum of Art, Portland Art Museum, Vanderbilt University Gallery, Strasbourg Musée des Beaux-Arts, Victoria and Albert Museum and many others.