The Bonaventure Pine: Paul Signac

Paul Signac: The Bonaventure Pine

The Bonaventure Pine is an 1893 pointillist oil on canvas painting by French Neo-Impressionist artist Paul Signac.

Created by founder of of the art style pointillism Paul Signac at the height of his experimental powers, The Bonaventure Pine is in the realm of divisionism or pointillism.

Under the influence of fellow painter Georges Seurat’s scientific approach to color theory, this French painter was one of several artists who became known as Neo-Impressionists. Pointillism entailed a style of painting using small dots that did not converge in the picture but were intended to do so in the eye of the spectator.

In this painting, we can see the Frenchman’s disruption of pure drawn line with dots as in the outer edges of the distant hills.

Signac’s tonality or overall lighting is dark, as he uses purples and other dark colors in the trunk and foliage of the tree. The pine itself – combined with its monumental scale in the picture – is a riot of colors that gives a sense of a sheer overpowering presence. In the background, and paling in significance is the leisurely boaters.

The overall effect overwhelms and is of a teeming nature confined only by – and barely by – the outer edge of the canvas.

Paul Signac’s The Bonaventure Pine can be found in the Audrey Jones Beck Building at the Museum of Fine Arts in Houston, Texas in the United States.

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