French artist Edouard Léon Cortès captures a sun-bathed Sacré-Coeur in this exceptionally rare oil on canvas. The subject is a rarity for the celebrated painter, whose works more typically portrayed the Parisian urban landscape at dusk. Rather than the artificial glow of torches and lamps, Cortès chose to portray the brilliant white walls of this iconic monument in natural sunlight. A virtuoso of the impressionistic technique, Cortès' mastery of color and light is fully evident in this outstanding composition.
Born at Lagny-Sur-Marne, a town just 20 miles outside of Paris, in 1882, Cortès began his artistic studies at the age of 13 under the instruction of his father, who had been a highly successful painter for the Spanish Royal Court. Just four years later, the young Cortès embarked on a five-year-long course of formal art education at the École des Beaux-Arts in Paris. It was there that he developed his distinctive impressionistic flair, imparting splashes of color and heavy strokes of paint into his Parisian street scenes. His now-legendary cityscapes quickly gained popularity in France, and later in America and Canada, earning great admiration from his peers, patrons, and critics. Today, Cortès continues to be lauded as one of the great painters of the Belle Époque.
This important work is illustrated on page 185 of Édouard Cortès Le Poete Parisien de la Peinture, 1999, by D. Klein.
Canvas: 14 1/4" high x 20 7/8" wide
Frame: 23 1/2" high x 30" wide
Signature: Signed “Edouard Cortès” (lower right)