Alexandre Gabriel Decamps (French, 1803-1860)
Peasant Shacks with Clothesline
Signed "D. C." l.l., identified on a presentation plaque.
Oil on canvas, 11 7/8 x 15 1/2in. (30.5 x 39.2 cm), framed.
Condition: Minor paint loss, abrasions, surface grime.
Provenance: Estate of N. David Scotti, Providence, Rhode Island.
N.B. Alexandre-Gabriel Decamps, Orientalist, genre, and history painter, as well as a sometime caricaturist, was one of the first French painters of the 19th century to turn from Neoclassicism to Romanticism. Born in Paris in 1803, Decamps spent time in the countryside as a youth, and there he developed a love of drawing. His art training was uneven, studying briefly with Etienne Bouhot and Alexandre-Denis Abel de Pujol, but he admired the works of Rembrandt and Chardin and learned extensively by studying their palette and glazes. Decamps' travels as a young man to the Near East and Asia Minor, as well as Italy, inspired his painting. As a result of his visit to the Middle East, he was among the first European artists to represent Biblical scenes with natural, local backgrounds. While visiting Smyrna it is said that he made enough sketches to provide Orientalist subject matter throughout his career. Decamps also produced a number of genre scenes from France and Algeria. His exhibition record is extensive, beginning at the Paris Salon of 1827, including many prizes, and he was elected an Officer of the French Legion of Honor in 1851.
The frame is damaged.