Paul Gauguin’s painting, La Belle Angèle, is a masterpiece that depicts Marie-Angélique Satre, an innkeeper in Pont-Aven who was considered one of the most beautiful women at the time. Gauguin produced the painting while living in Marie Henry’s inn at Le Pouldu in Brittany. The painting shows his main aesthetic concerns with a unique combination of various sources of inspiration.
The heteroclite assembly of different elements demonstrates Gauguin’s mastery and his artistic ability to meld traditional styles with innovative techniques, creating a harmonious composition that has been admired by many artists throughout history. Degas himself bought it in 1891 and regarded it as a valuable masterpiece.
La Belle Angèle follows the naturalistic style with its use of bright colors and strong contrasts. The beautiful woman dressed in her Breton costume stands out against the green background while looking directly at the viewer with an intense gaze. It’s interesting to note how Gauguin used bold colors, patterns, and texture to emphasize her clothes’ elegance while also giving subtle hints about her personality.
In summary, La Belle Angèle is not just another portrait; it’s a display of artistry and ingenuity that embodies Paul Gauguin’s revolutionary approach to art. Its combination of various inspirations shows how he merged different cultural styles from Tahiti, where he went later on in life after leaving France only four years after this painting had been created. It remains popular today as one of Gauguin’s most celebrated works and continues to inspire artists worldwide with its beauty and creativity.