'Winter in Provence' by Raymond Debiève (circa 1970s)
Fine Art •
'Winter in Provence', gouache on art paper, by Raymond Debiève (circa 1970s). There is both beauty and melancholy in this delightfully charming artwork. The artist's naive style is at odds with the refinement, poise and sophistication of the painting. Perhaps the artist was making a statement as well with the broken wall leaving the phrase, 'Vive La...' incomplete. Perhaps he was inviting the viewer to fill in the blank as they saw fit. Vive la France!' is a phrase packed with tradition and history. It could be said it is the French equivalent of 'God Bless America'. Previous similarly used phrases in French history were: Vive la Revolution! and Vive la République!, among others. In the days of the French monarchy, one might hear: 'Le roi est mort. Vive le roi.' ('The King is dead. Long live the King.'). This may seen contradictory, however, the idea was that one king is dead, but another one is there to replace him; the country can continue to function just as it was, on and on, for all eternity. This is but an interesting aside. What is most important is the beauty of the painting with its colour palette of late autumn and early winter. The composition is interesting as well with a juxtaposition of its two subjects. A man walks with his dog, head down, towards the left of the artwork. Another subtly placed subject, a toiling woman, appears in the mid-right hand, facing the opposite direction pulling the viewer's eyes from the main character. Is there a message there? We are unsure.
Although Picasso's influence on Debiève's work is undeniable, his own naive artistic style is on display as well. This artwork is in good overall condition. It is newly framed and glazed with anti-reflective glass. The artist signed the piece in the lower left hand. Please enjoy the many photos accompanying this listing. A video will be provided upon request.
About the Artist: Raymond Debiève (1931-2011), was born, along with his twin brother, Michel, in the North of France near the border with Belgium. Their parents, of humble origins, noted a talent for drawing and art in both of the boys and encouraged them in that direction. Unfortunately the boys were separated during the war years but reunited afterwards. They attended the School of Fine Arts in Valenciennes after WWII where they were awarded successive 1st prizes in the Concours de Encouragement à l'Art. Raymond not only painted but was a gifted sculptor of metal works as well. In 1960 he exhibited, with great success, a series of very colourful paintings at the Galerie des Flandres in Lille, France, and later in his career in Paris and Switzerland. Primarily with respect to his portraits of women, Raymond was undeniably influenced by Picasso. At the same time, he has managed to forge a distinct style which is much admired and now collected. In 1962, Debiève relocated to Provence with his family where he continued to create and exhibit art until his death in the town of Orange in 2011. Since then, Debiève's star has been on the rise and his works more and more in demand internationally.
Dimensions with frame:
H 51.5 cm / 20.3"
W 61 cm / 24"
Dimensions without frame:
H 36 cm / 14.2"
W 46 cm / 18.1"