'The Sailor's Shelter' by Lucien Martial (circa 1960s)
'The Sailor's Shelter', oil on board, by Lucien Martial (circa 1960s). Appointed by the French Government as 'Artist of the Navy', a particular honour in France, Martial excelled in maritime subjects. In the far west of France, in Finisterre (Land's End), Brittany, which this painting depicts, lies a major seat of their Navy and maritime industries. The area painted by the artist here lies on the Sizun Peninsula, in the town of Audierne. It lies at the mouth of the Goyen river and for centuries was a fishing village with a wide, sandy beach. The harbour, formerly important to that industry, is now essentially a port for yachts. These days, the town is filled with cafés, bars and restaurants, crêperies, boutiques and holiday agencies. The house behind the long stone wall is very typically in the Breton style. Painted white, sturdy with graded roofs and small windows to best deal with the finicky, damp maritime climate. The overcast sky with just touches of blue is also typical of this area where Breton, a Gaelic language, is still spoken along with French. The artwork is in good overall condition, has been newly framed and is signed by the artist in the lower right hand (with his trademark anchor).
About the Artist: Lucien Martial (1892-1987), born into a family of craftsmen in the 10th arrondissement of Paris, his father sold flowers and feathers, his mother worked in embroidery. His teacher noted that his young pupil had a disposition for drawing and encouraged his parents to point him in that direction. He was admitted to the National School of Fine Arts in Fernand Cormon's studio. The 1914-1918 War interrupted his studies when he was mobilised in the infantry. He was seriously wounded by a bullet in the lung and was subsequently decorated with the military medal. Back in Paris, he resumed his studies at the Beaux-Arts. After a stay in the South of France, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs appointed him professor at the School of Fine Arts in Montreal (Quebec) in 1925 where he remained for 10 years. The artist exhibited at the Salon of French artists in 1929 and 1950. He was appointed an official painter of the Navy in 1943, a particular honour in France. He died in Paris in 1987.
Dimensions with Frame:
H 61 cm / 24"
W 72 cm / 28.3"
Dimensions without Frame:
H 50 cm / 19.7"
W 61 cm / 24"