Lot Sale Results

Maurice Galbraith Cullen

Maurice Galbraith Cullen

Maurice Galbraith Cullen
Canadian, Impressionist & Modern Art Live auction

Lot # 154

Maurice Galbraith Cullen
AAM RCA 1866 - 1934 Canadian

Ice Breaking, L'Assomption
oil on board circa 1914
signed and on verso titled on the Masters Gallery label and certified by Cullen Inventory #1451
10 3/8 x 13 3/4 in  26.4 x 34.9cm

Kastel Gallery, Montreal
Galerie L'Art Français Ltée, Montreal
Masters Gallery Ltd., Calgary
Private Collection, Vancouver

Hughes de Jouvancourt, Maurice Cullen, 1978, the circa 1914 canvas entitled Ice Breaking, L’Assomption, in the collection of the National Gallery of Canada, reproduced page 91
Crystal S. Parsons, Maurice Cullen and His Circle, National Gallery of Canada, 2009, page 11, the circa 1914 canvas entitled Ice Breaking, L’Assomption, in the collection of the National Gallery of Canada, reproduced frontispiece

Art Gallery of Ontario, Toronto, Special Exhibition, label on verso

Maurice Cullen was one of Canada’s important Impressionist painters. In 1888 he traveled to Paris, the epicentre of this exciting new art movement. On his return to Canada, Cullen’s painting continued to embody the tenets of Impressionism – his scenes were executed out of doors, and light and atmosphere were paramount. Ice Breaking, L'Assomption is the sketch for the circa 1914 National Gallery of Canada canvas of the same name, and this image is an outstanding example of his work from this time period, in which he often portrayed winter activities such as people cutting and harvesting ice. Crystal Parsons notes that later, “following his return from service overseas as a war artist in 1919, the human element is largely absent from his work, merely reflected in the occasional house.”

This scene takes place in L’Assomption, a suburb of Montreal, and Cullen’s treatment of winter light and colour is acutely sensitive. The work has an overall silvery mauve tone, and Cullen infuses delicate green and pink tints into the snow and ice. His softly brushed sky and the blurred reflections in the stream are especially atmospheric.

Estimate: $12,000 ~ $16,000 CAD

Sold For: $31,250.00 CAD (including buyer's premium)

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