Un Sois-Bois made its first appearance for sale in France in 2020 at Millons & Associes. It was still in its original Empire style frame which was a commonly used style of frame on Barbizon paintings. The painting due to the fact that it had few owners, was in exceptional original condition giving the surface of this work a pristine feel. The painting has had its first cleaning and we are pleased to present this work as a real find in the market in terms of a naturalistic study of light. An artist such as Richet often painted formulaic works where he would place a figure at end or beginning of day, against a setting or rising sun, during their work down a lonely road. Always a sense of nature and the relationship of man to nature.
However, in this work we get a glimpse of the artist working for himself. A study such as this is the artist working through the finer points of understanding how to depict the complexities of foliage, ground and trunks in a forest setting and the peculiarities of light hitting the trunks. It also stands a pure nature study. These works are so important and stand as an exercise that will rarely be done by any artist again. These artists too from the Barizon era had a patience and ability too to depict successfully, tones of green with little variation but they could make them read properly.
These intimate slices of nature and the personal nature of the study for the artist make one feel like they are getting a glimpse of something meant never to be shared!
Private Collection, France
Millons & Associes, France