64. André Giroux

Paris 1801 – 1879 Paris

Santa Trinità dei Monti in the Snow, 1829 or 1830

Though taken from an almost identical viewpoint, Giroux’s depiction of Trinità dei Monti stands in stark contrast to Dupré’s (cat. 63). Here there was no time to painstakingly focus on details, as the city had just been covered by a highly unusual snowfall and Giroux had to work quickly in order to capture its fleeting effects. The weather on this wintry grey afternoon being hardly conducive to working en plein air, we can speculate that the view was painted from the comfort of a room in the Academy, perhaps the window of the painter’s own studio (Giroux was a pensionnaire at the Academy from 1826-29). The fluidity of the brushwork betrays the speed with which this study was made and though the architecture is indicated schematically it still retains a strong sense of topographical accuracy. The artist’s capacity for abstraction and delight in the materiality of paint are evident, particularly in the variety of textures and impasto found in the lower left corner of the convent’s garden.