“Château de Saintines, Oise” is one of the most important by Maurice Utrillo - an artist of considerable considerable critical acclaim. Considered one of the pioneers of The School of Paris, the pre-World War I, modern artistic movement characterized by experimentation and pluralism, “Château de Saintines, Oise” features a view of a stunning castle built on shores of a pretty lake surrounded by lush greenery: colours used are fresh and lively, typical of the summer season. The sky is painted in a pastel blue in sharp contrast with the dark roofs of the majestic manor. Oil colours give richness and depth to the landscape and skilful use of Utrillo`s painting techniques combines harmoniously all elements of the scene.
Utrillo’s developed a very personal style of landscape painting that combined features of Post-impressionism and Cubism.
Sickert is most often identified with London, whether it be his music-hall paintings of the 1880s or his Camden Town interiors of the early 1900s, but for almost a decade from 1895 to 1904, Venice was the city which was to form the dominant theme in his painting. It was here that Sickert, through his continued experimentation into innovative modes of expression, came to be known as one of the most important British artists at the turn of the century.
Ruskin’s influential book, The Stones of Venice, caused a flood of interest in Venice towards the end of the nineteenth century and Sickert, like many before him, became passionate about this mystical floating city. Sickert would have first come across Venice as a studio assistant to Whistler when he assisted him with his series of Venetian etchings. Unlike Whistler who had concentrated on narrow walkways and backwaters, in his early visits to the city, Sickert’s focus was on the impressive.
architecture of Venice’s grand buildings particularly centered around St Mark’s Square which he found ‘engrossing’ (Sickert in a letter to Wilson Steer, 1895). Sickert’s Venetian landscapes were amongst his most sought-after works in the early part of the twentieth century, becoming particularly popular in Paris: when Bernheim Jeune held an exhibition of Sickert’s works in 1904, a third of the canvases were of Venetian subjects.