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The Gust of Wind

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1860-th , 48×66 cm • Oil, Canvas

Description of the artwork «The Gust of Wind»

Most of the popular stories about French landscape painter Camille Corot usually start with the following words: “His life was as quiet as most of his paintings.” No doubt that we could only partially apply this description to his life. Though, landscapes by Corot mainly depict placid nature and bright mood. Corot had never painted winter landscapes; during that season, he worked only in his atelier using sketches he had made during summer. Now you have a rare chance to see the landscape by Corot depicting a stormy weather. This is one of the most famous and impressive artworks by Corot.

A gust of wind bends trunks and branches of the trees carrying down a female figure. The sky is threatening and yellow sparkles of the sunset are alarmous, however, Corot’s trees are in the focus as usually. The artist was able to depict them alive, conveying branch movements and vibration of leaves. In the Gust of Wind the branches are bent under the wind pressure and dark tree crowns are ripped apart quivering. If you scrutinize the painting for a long time, you could feel like narrowing your eyes as in reality during strong wind. A little human figure looks scaring lonely in front of the storm; it is a romantic motif depicting vulnerability of a human being in the Universe.
It is surprising that so unusual for Corot’s oeuvre “stormy” artwork appeared to be one of the most popular. It was carefully copied and unashamedly falsified more often than any other. However, Corot, who possessed rare in the art circle kindness and generosity, was not really upset. His life description includes the following legend. Once his well-heeled admirer entered Corot’s atelier grandly carrying the Gust of Wind painting. He probably wanted to thank the favorite artist or probably just to share the joy of his acquisition.

- It’s not by Corot! – said Corot in surprise.
- Is it? I can’t believe. I am going to order to find the man who fobbed off me with this fraud and imprison him at once.
- Wait a moment! – Corot became nervous, - Why are you going to arrest him at once? He must have some family and little children.
- I don’t care. He has falsified your artwork and by law and by rights…
- You say, by law?! Now you will get a real, legal and authentic Corot! – With those words the artist snatched out the fraud from the visitor’s hands and put his wide signature in the corner of the falsified painting.
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About the artwork
Subject and objects: Landscape
Style of art and technique: Romanticism, Oil

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