Suburban Scene (1896) by Henri Rousseau

Suburban Scene - Henri Rousseau - 1896

Artwork Information

TitleSuburban Scene
ArtistHenri Rousseau
Dimensions49 x 65 cm
Art MovementNaïve Art (Primitivism)
Current LocationPrivate Collection

About Suburban Scene

The artwork entitled “Suburban Scene” is a painting by Henri Rousseau dated back to 1896. This piece employs the medium of oil on canvas and falls within the Naïve Art movement, specifically Primitivism. The painting is of a cityscape genre, measuring 49 cm by 65 cm, and is currently held in a private collection.

“Suburban Scene” presents a tranquil depiction of an idyllic suburban landscape. The composition features a series of houses, possibly within the outskirts of a town, outlined against a soft, dusky sky. The houses are painted in a manner that showcases Rousseau’s characteristic flatness of form and his application of detail, giving a somewhat simplified yet charming representation of residential architecture. In the foreground, trees with leafless branches suggest the coolness of a late autumn or early winter environment, their silhouettes dominating the canvas and contributing to a sense of peacefulness and stillness.

Strictly speaking, the figures within the scene are part of its life and vibrancy, where various individuals engage in daily activities. A person depicted on the left-side seems to be walking with a contraption, possibly hinting at a suburban livelihood or leisure, while a small figure stands alone in the middle of the barren field, adding a note of solitude or introspection. The overall effect is a snapshot of everyday life with a serene and somewhat austere atmosphere, possibly reflecting the changing social landscapes of the late 19th century. The essence of the artwork lies in its ability to capture the quietude of suburban living with a distinctive stylistic approach that is emblematic of Rousseau’s work within the Naïve Art tradition.

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