'The Chateau of Lourdes' by Maurice Martin (circa 1930s-50s)
'The Chateau of Lourdes', oil on board, by French artist, Maurice Martin (circa 1930s- 50s). The castle is in Southwest France strategically placed at the entrance to the seven valleys of the Lavedan, a mountainous natural region in the heart of the Pyrenees. With a colourful and historical past, the artist captures this stronghold on a bright summer day. The chateau is now listed as one of France's historical monuments. Nearby of course, the Mariane apparitions are claimed to have occurred in 1858. The first of these is the apparition of 11 February 1858, when 14-year old Bernadette Soubirous told her mother that a "lady" spoke to her in the cave of Massabielle while she was gathering firewood with her sister and a friend. Similar apparitions of the "Lady" were reported on eighteen occasions that year, until the climax revelation of Our Lady of the Immaculate Conception took place. Soubirous was made a saint of the Catholic Church.
Relative to the artist's style, there is a three dimensional quality to the artwork as the promontory appears etched from the board upon which it was painted. The vibrant green of the trees contrasts with the solemnity of the castle's stone walls. The work is in good vintage condition and has been newly framed. The top of the artist's signature is just visible in red above the frame edge in the lower right hand corner. Please view the many accompanying photos with this listing to appreciate the piece's condition and inviting style. Upon request a video will be provided.
About the Artist: Maurice Martin (1894-1978) was born in Mormant, France where he spent his childhood. A gifted schoolboy, he spent his free time drawing at the same time his father put him to work in the family house painting business. The family then moved to Paris around 1910 and the young painter continued to work in the father's business until 1914, regretting that he could not study at the Paris School of Beaux Arts. In the early 1930s Martin exhibited at the Salon des Indépendants, the Salon d'Automne, and often at the Salon des Artistes français. In 1946 he won the Gold Medal as well as the Corot Prize and the Rosa Bonheur Prize for his artworks. But it was not until 1950 that he was able to devote full time to his art. In addition to his numerous awards he also received grants allowing him to travel and paint in Morocco, in Madagascar and in 1969 in Tunisia. He passed away in Paris in 1978 having painted to the point whereby his ill health prevented him from continuing.
Dimensions with frame:
H 32 cm / 12.6"
W 37 cm / 14.6"
Dimensions without frame:
H 17.5 cm / 6.9"
W 22.5 cm / 8.9"