A magical impressionist


*     7 August 1862 Port-Louis (Mauritius Islands)
†  16 July 1939 Paris



Born in Port Louis in Mauritius to Breton parents, he visited the local College and became interested in drawings.
His father was an inspector at the French Lloyd and a correspondent of the Véritas Bureau.


His family returned to France in 1872 and settled in Dunkirk, where he began his art studies under A. Desmit.


1880 - 1882 Le Sidaner received most of his tutelage from the École des Beaux-Arts under the instruction of Alexandre Cabanel but later broke away due to artistic differences.


By the time of a sojourn to the Côte d'Opale, at Etaples, Henri discovered impressionist painting. At the Salon of 1882, he is overwhelmed by two paintings of Manet: "Le Printemps" and "Un bar aux Folies-Bergère".
At the same year, he discovers the paintings of Claude Monet and his friends which incite him to start painting with the same technique at the small port of Etaples.
"It is a place of noble character," he writes "with beautiful single lines, harmonious horizons of water and dunes, to some extent this severe place that our great Cazin immortalized".


Between 1885 and 1894 Le Sidaner lived the year round at the Etaples art colony and was joined there by his childhood friend Eugène Chigot (1860-1923), who shared his interest in atmospheric light. Later Le Sidaner traveled extensively throughout France. He also visited many cities around the globe.


In 1894 Le Sidaner moveed to Paris, to the rue Émile Allez.


The year of 1896 marks an important turning point of his work. The symbolist inspiration of the subjects boosts a renewed interest for the light. More than just the subject it is the surrounding luminosity which transfixes the painter.


At this point Le Sidaner entered a period of intense creative activity. His taste for the light effects focuses on the light-dark and the twilight tones. Discarding gradually the diffuse gleams of gray, blue and pearled white, he revealed, by juxtaposed touches, the ranges of the greens, the pinks, the reds or the purples.


In 1901 he settled in the lovely village of Gerberoy (Oise), where his house and garden became a constant inspiration for his pictures.


He exhibited at the Salon, the Galerie Georges Petit in Paris and in 1905 he held his first one-man exhibition at the Goupil Gallery, London.


The art of Le Sidaner reached its full maturity and his major concern remained the effect. He teaches exhaustively to his students that no landscape must be painted without the light effect which emphasizes it.


Henri Le Sidaner died in 1939 in Paris.


Marcel Proust's mention of Le Sidaner's work in his novel "In Search of Lost Time" confirms its later reputation. In "Sodom and Gomorrah", the narrator mentions that an eminent barrister from Paris had devoted his income to collecting the paintings of the "highly distinguished" Le Sidaner.



Henri Le Sidaner | His Life and works | Download PDF



Paintings in museum collections

Anvers; Musée Plantin-Moretius.
- Le pavillon dans les roses, um 1916, Oil on panel,  26 x 36 cm


Beauvais; Musée départemental de l'Oise
- JARDIN AU CLAIR DE LUNE, Inventory No. INV 82 26


Bilbao Fine Arts Museum, Spain

- Bruges Canal


Cambrai; Musée municipal.
- Les Volets clos, 1935, Oil on panel, 27,5 x 35 cm


Cardiff, UK, Amgueddfa Cymru - National Museum Wales
- Boats, Heyst, 1900


Châlons-en-Champagne; Musée des Beaux-Arts et d'Archéologie de
- Bénédiction de la mer, 1891, Oil on canvas, 340 x 523 cm


Chalon-sur-Saône; Musée Denon
- Le Bouquet devant la fenêtre, 1936, 92 x 69 cm; Musée d'Orsay Inventory No. AM 2222


Chicago, USA; Art Institute
- The Park Gateway, c. 1905, Oil on canvas, 26 x 32 1/4 in. (66 x 81.7 cm), Le Sidaner 283
- Seine and Pont Royal, 1905-10, Oil on canvas, 32 1/2 x 46 1/2 in., Le Sidaner 254


Cleveland Museum of Art, Ohio, USA


Cologne, Allemagne, Wallraf-Richartz-Museum


Detroit Institute of Arts, Michigan, USA
- The Tea Table, 1919


Dijon; Musée des Beaux-Arts
- LA MAISON SOUS L'EGLISE, Inventory No. E 3510


Douai; Musée de la Chartreuse.
- Le Dimanche, 1898, Oil on canvas, 112,5 x 192 cm, Inventory No. INV. 2729
- LA TOMBE DU SOLDAT, Inventory No. INV 2150
- LE TAPIS ROUGE, Inventory No. INV. 2240

- PORTRAIT DE MME PIETTRE, Inventory No. INV. 2358


Gray; Musée Baron Martin
- Le Dessert, 1903 Oil on canvas, 65 x 82 cm, Musée d'Orsay Inventory No. LUX 628


Indianapolis Museum of Art, Indiana, USA


Le Touquet-Paris-Plage; Musée municipal
- Ciel de printemps, 1913, Oil on canvas, 126 x 155 cm


Liège; Belgique, Musée d'Art moderne
- Le Pavillon français à Trianon, um 1910, Oil on canvas, 92 x 73 cm


Lille; Musée des Beaux-Arts
- LE PRESBYTERE ET L'EGLISE DE GERBEROY,1903, Oil on canvas, 59 x 62 cm, Inventory No.  P 1893


London, UK, Tate Gallery


Lyon; Musée des Beaux-Arts
- VILLAGE AU CLAIR DE LUNE, Inventory No.  1958-108


Madrid, Spain, Thyssen-Bornemisza Museum


Metz; Musée de La Cour d'Or
- La Treille, Isola Bella, 1909, Oil on canvas, 82 x 101 cm


Muncie, Ball State Museum of Art, Indiana, USA
- Clisson Bridge, Moonlight (Pont de Clisson-Clair de lune), 1911


Nantes; Musée des Beaux-Arts
- Soir de mai, Inventory No. 2159 ; 935.3.1.P
- La table au Soleil, Inventory No.  1937


New York, USA; Memorial Art Gallery of the University of Rochester
- Moonlight: The Artist's House at Gerberoy


Oxford; UK; Ashmolean Museum
- Un canal de Bruges à l'aube, Oil on canvas, 49 x 65 cm


Paris; Musée d'Orsay
- La table, 1901, Oil on canvas H. 0.73 ; L. 0.7 m.
  Lieu de conservation, musée Petiet, Limoux, France Inventory No., LUX 545
- Le soleil dans la maison, 1926. Öl auf Leinwand H. 0.92 ; L. 0.732 m.
  Lieu de conservation, Sénat, Paris, France, Inventory No. LUX 1533
- Clair de lune, tableau
  Lieu de conservation Ambassade de France, Belgrade, Serbie, Inventory No., LUX 989
- L'église de Tréguier Oil on canvas, H. 0.9 ; L. 1. m.
  Lieu de conservation Musée des Beaux-Arts, Rennes, France, Inventory No.  LUX 1158
- La terrasse, tableau, H. 80. ; L. 92. m.
  Lieu de conservation Assemblée nationale, Paris, France, Inventory No.  RF 1999 19


Pasadena, California, USA, Norton Simon Museum


Pau; Musée des Beaux-Arts
- La Barrière verte, Inventory No. 03.8.1


Philadelphia Museum of Art, USA


Rome, Italie,  Palazzo Ruspoli


Saint-Denis; La Réunion, Musée Léon-Dierx
- Esquisse pour Saint-Paul de Londres, 1907, Oil on panel, 170 x 222 cm


Saint-Quentin; Musée Antoine Lécuyer
- Les Fenêtres sur le jardin, crépuscule, 1934-1935 Oil on canvas, 60 x 73 cm


Tainan, Taiwan, Chi-Mei Museum
- La table a crepuscule le jardin


Troyes; Musée d'art d'archéologie et de sciences naturelles
- LA MAISON DU SOIR, Inventory No.  35.2


Valenciennes; Musée des Beaux-Arts
- Le chemin du canal à Gravelines, Inventory No.  P.47.1.6
- Matinée dans un parc, Inventory No.  P.47.9
- Portrait de Madame Batillat, Inventory No.  P.47.11
- Un canal la nuit à Nemours, Inventory No.  P.47.1.8
- Jardin de Hampton-Court, Inventarnummer P.47.7


Versailles; Musée Lambinet
- Bouquet de roses, vers 1934-1938, Oil on panel, 27 x 35 cm, Inventory No. 1430
- La tour au clair de lune, Gerberoy, Inventory No.  90.4.3
- Le buste, Automne, Versailles, Inventory No.  90.4.4
- Musée Lambinet, la façade sur le jardin, Inventory No. 1429



Major exhibitions

02.05.-16.07.1989, Musée Marmottan, Paris, Henri Le Sidaner
(Catalog: La Bibliothèque des Arts, 1989)


Henri Le Sidaner
6 September - 17 November 1996 Liége, Musée d'art moderne et d'art contemporain
3 December 1996 - 8 March 1997 Carcassonne, Musée des Beaux-Arts
3 December -  8 March 1997Limoux, MuséePetiet
23 März - 22 June 1997, Laren, Singer Museum


16 May-7 October 2001 Henri Le Sidaner en son jardin de Gerberoy de 1901 à 1939, Beauvais et Douai, France
(Catalog: Josette Galiègue, Éditions Monelle Hayot , ISBN 2-903824-32-0 ; 9782903824327)


29 June -  30 September 2002 Henri Le Sidaner et la Bretagne, Musée de Pont-Aven
(Catalog:  Musée Pont-Aven, Pont-Aven 2002, ISBN 2-910128-27-X


7 June- 27 September 2009, Henri Le Sidaner, ein magischer Impressionist - A magical impressionist, Kunstsammlungen Chemnitz, Allemagne
(Catalog:  Ingrid Mössinger, Karin Sagner, Independent Publishing Group, München, 2009 , ISBN 3422022139, 9783422022133)




Yann Farinaux-Le Sidaner, Le Sidaner , Catalogue raisonné, Éditions André Souret, Monaco, 1989