A.S. Hartrick, Gauguin's studio, Pont-Aven, 1886, London, Courtauld Institute Gallery
Memories of Van Gogh and Gauguin: Hartrick's reminiscences
Archibald Standish Hartrick (1864-1950) is one of the few artists who knew both Van Gogh and Gauguin and who went on to record his memories of them. In July 1886, at the age of 22, the British painter met Gauguin in Pont-Aven. Hartrick returned to Paris in November and soon afterwards met Van Gogh, with whom he remained friends for nearly a year. An important newly rediscovered text written by Hartrick in 1913 records his detailed reminiscences of the two post-impressionists. More tangible evidence of Hartrick's visit to Pont-Aven has also just emerged: two of his rare Brittany paintings have been acquired by the Courtauld Institute Gallery in London. All this makes it an opportune moment to re-evaluate Hartrick's links with Van Gogh and Gauguin.
From Bangalore to Brittany
A.S. Hartrick was born in Bangalore, India, on 7 August 1864, the son of a British army captain. Two years later his family returned to their native Scotland. Hartrick later studied at the Slade School in London under Alphonse Legros (1884-85), and then went to Paris, initially attending the Académie Julian. During the summer of 1886, probably in June, he travelled to Pont-Aven, to work in the small Breton port. There he stayed at the Pension Gloanec, meeting many of the other painters who flocked to this new artist's haven. In November he returned to Paris and the following month entered the Atelier Cormon. He worked in Paris for a year, encountering many avant-garde artists, and at the end of 1887 he returned to Scotland.
Hartrick's Pont-Aven paintings have remained relatively unknown, but two key works were acquired by the Courtauld in 2000: Gauguin's studio, Pont-Aven and Village street, Pont-Aven, both dating from 1886.1 They were donated by Miss Eva A. Black, a niece of the artist who lived in Scotland and who died in 2001, aged 98.2 The two paintings are fairly traditional in style, particularly the road scene, and owe little to the influence of Gauguin and the nascent Pont-Aven School.
Gauguin's studio, Pont-Aven (fig. 1) depicts the exterior of the Manoir de Lezaven, where an atelier extension
A.S. Hartrick, Village street, Pont-Aven, 1886, London, Courtauld Institute Gallery
had been built in 1865.3 The studio is in the centre of the painting (just the upper part of its white wall is visible beneath the roof). In the foreground is a girl wearing a Pont-Aven costume of the period, and washed linen is drying on the grass. Hartrick does not focus on the buildings, but on the setting, and it was probably only later that he entitled the picture Gauguin's studio. Indeed, the painting could well be his Blanchissage Breton, shown at the Paris Salon in 1887. The studio building was never depicted by Gauguin, nor, apparently, in detail by any other 19th-century artists, and there are no early photographs.4 This therefore appears to be the best visual record of the place during Gauguin's period, although the building does still survive.
Village street, Pont-Aven (fig. 2) depicts a road, with a woman and two little girls walking towards a group of farmhouses.5 The location has not been identified, and it probably shows houses which have since disappeared. The costumes are typical of those worn in Pont-Aven in the 1880s. When the painting was exhibited in 1936, the Fulham Chronicle recorded a story that presumably came from Hartrick: ‘During the painting of this [work] the artist was actually stoned by the resentful Breton villagers! It was only the timely intervention of the priest from Nizon that prevented this exhibition from being robbed of one of its pleasantest pictures.’6 The assistance of the Nizon priest suggests that the painting may have been done on the road to the small village, which lies three kilometres to the west of Pont-Aven. The priest was probably Hippolyte Orvoën, who served from 1886-89. The reference to him is intriguing, since in September 1888 Gauguin wanted to present him with his Vision after the sermon (Edinburgh, National Galleries of Scotland) for the Nizon church, but it was rejected.7
Following his departure from France, Hartrick settled into a much more conventional milieu in Britain. In 1890 he became an illustrator for the Daily Graphic in London, where he worked for two years. One of his fellow illustrators, Philip May (1863-1903), drew his portrait in 1892 (fig. 3). In 1896 Hartrick married the artist Lily Blatherwick (1854-1934), who was his stepsister, and the couple moved to the Gloucestershire countryside for a
Phil May, Portrait of Hartrick, 1892, present location unknown (reproduced in A painter's pilgrimage, p. 102)
decade, initially to Acton Turville and then to Tresham, before eventually returning to London. From the late 1890s he worked mainly as an illustrator and printmaker, and in 1909 he was a founding member of the London-based Senefelder Club, named after the inventor of lithography. He was also elected an associate of the Royal Watercolour Society in 1910 and a full member ten years later. Hartrick taught drawing and painting at London's Camberwell School of Art (1908-14) and lithography at the Central School (1914-29). He illustrated numerous books and wrote studies on drawing and lithography.8 Hartrick died on 1 February 1950.9
Although Hartrick recorded his memories of Van Gogh and Gauguin in his autobiography, A painter's pilgrimage through fifty years, they have never been taken particularly seriously, mainly because they were not published until 1939 - 53 years after he had known the artists in France.10 The author also admitted in the introduction to his book that it was not based on documentary material: ‘I kept no diary; and although I have looked at some papers and letters, I preferred not to burden what I wished to say with details already forgotten.’11
I have, however, tracked down evidence that Hartrick's reminiscences of Van Gogh and Gauguin were recorded before the First World War, i.e. more than a quarter of a century before the publication of his autobiography. A paper entitled ‘Post-impressionism, with some personal recollections of Vincent Van Gogh and Paul Gauguin’ survives in three forms. First, it was published in the May 1913 issue of The Imprint, a London journal primarily devoted to typography and printmaking.12 This was a very short-lived venture, and only nine issues appeared before it ceased publication. The article does not appear to have been cited in any of the subsequent literature on either Van Gogh or Gauguin.
Secondly, the same text was privately reprinted as a slim 24-page book, Post-impressionism, with some personal recollections of Vincent Van Gogh & Paul Gauguin. At the back of the book is an explanatory colophon: ‘Printed at the L.C.C. [London County Council] Central School of Arts & Crafts by the Day Technical School of Book Production. Teacher J.H. Mason. 1916.’ The book is extremely rare and it is neither in the British Library nor in the UK National Art Library.13 The three extant copies can be found in the archive of the Central St Martin's School of Art. Each is bound differently, and they were apparently preserved as examples of books typeset and bound by students, rather than for their content.
Finally, a 29-page typescript of the text of Hartrick's paper also survives in the college archive.14
In preparing his 1913 paper, Hartrick had probably been spurred on by the controversial ‘Manet and the Post-Impressionists’ exhibition, held at London's Grafton Galleries from November 1910 to January 1911. Twenty-three works by Van Gogh and 21 by Gauguin had been on show, giving the British public their first real taste of the paintings of these two artists. Visiting the exhibition must have reawakened Hartrick's interest in his old colleagues, and friends probably encouraged him to record his memories.15 When in 1939 he came to publish his autobiography, he presumably took his 1913 essay, added further details and expanded it with secondary material.16
The fact that Hartrick's reminiscences actually date from 1913 means that scholars should take them far more seriously than has previously been the case. Not only were they recorded considerably closer to the time when he had known the two painters, but there are other reasons to suggest that the author's recollections are, in fact, trustworthy. In 1913 relatively little material had been published on Gauguin and Van Gogh, so Hartrick's account would have been much less coloured by the writings of others.17 The two artists were not nearly as famous as they were to become, meaning Hartrick would have had less incentive to exaggerate his links with them - in contrast to 1939, when his publisher is likely to have encouraged him to
stress this aspect in his autobiography.
Hartrick's 1913 memoirs are particularly important because they cover periods in the life of the two post-impressionists that are relatively less well documented. Van Gogh was living with his brother Theo in Paris and therefore not in correspondence with him. The only other significant personal account of Gauguin's first visit to Pont-Aven in 1886 was written by the artist Henri Delavallée (1862-1943), whose brief recollections were published by Charles Chassé in 1921.18 Despite later critical comments regarding the reliability of Hartrick's autobiography, a detailed examination of his 1913 essay suggests that they are relatively accurate. The text not only provides a revealing insight into the personalities of the two artists, but also sometimes helps in the dating of works and chronology.
Memories of Gauguin
Hartrick spent the summer of 1886 at Pont-Aven, probably arriving in June or possibly early July. He was certainly there when Gauguin arrived on 25 July.19 Both men lodged at the Pension Gloanec, a favourite haunt of visiting artists in the central square of the village. Hartrick recalled his initial impression of Gauguin: ‘Tall, dark, rather handsome, with a fine powerful figure, and about forty years of age, wearing a blue jersey, and a beret on the
side of his head, is how I saw him first.’20 In terms of personality, he found him ‘self-contained, confident, silent, almost dour.’
Hartrick recounted an incident which took place during one of their first encounters: ‘Gauguin, a few days after his arrival and more or less a complete stranger, was passing through the little crowd of painters standing round the door of the Auberge, waiting for dejeuner. He was carrying a sketch, on which he had just been working, representing some nude boys bathing on a weir, painted in the now familiar “impressionist” manner, all spots in touches of pure colour.’21 Gauguin was immediately ridiculed by a Dutch artist also staying at the pension, and a crowd quickly gathered. Hartrick discreetly refers to him only as V, short for Hubert Vos (1855-1935).22
Hartrick then recounts what happened two weeks later. A pupil of Vos's, named only as P, switched his allegiance and began to go to Gauguin for instruction. P is presumably Ferdinand du Puigaudeau (1864-1930), then 22 and nicknamed Piccolo.23 In his 1924 Leicester Galleries catalogue essay on Gauguin, Hartrick added that P ‘invited his new master to share a studio he had taken at les Avens [Lezaven], and there Gauguin worked in comfort for the rest of his time at
Pont-Aven.’24 This comment is interesting, since it has usually been assumed that Gauguin only began using the Lezaven studio on his third visit to Pont-Aven in 1889, returning there again in 1894. The Lezaven house was owned by Marie-Perrine Lollichon, whose son, Louis Bergé, was then the village mayor. It is located on a hillside, 200 metres from the west bank of the River Aven, and Gauguin frequently painted in the nearby Champ Derout-Lollichon.
Another of Hartrick's anecdotes provides an insight into Gauguin's attitude towards drawing. Gauguin compared some studies of geese he had made with those of the English illustrator, Randolph Caldecott (1846-1886), who had visited Pont-Aven in the 1870s. Hartrick recounted: ‘I remember one interesting conversation with him [Gauguin], in which he expressed great admiration for the drawings of Randolph Caldecott, whose children's books he had. That, he said, was real drawing expressive of character and of life, as distinct from the machines made in the studio.’25
In his 1924 essay, Hartrick also recalled a lost work which Gauguin had made for the Pension Gloanec: ‘I remember he painted a panel for the dining-room of the Auberge, an autumn landscape, which appeared to most of us who fed there as being very extreme in its crude exaggeration of purple and gold; though of course it was nothing to what we were soon to become accustomed to.’26
Hartrick noted that although ‘I never knew Gauguin intimately, I saw him daily at the Auberge Gloanec for
three or four months, and heard him talk.’ At the time Hartrick also knew Charles Laval (1862-1894) and Du Puigaudeau, and ‘from these two I gathered, vicariously, perhaps more about him [Gauguin] than I should probably have arrived at on my own.’27 However, Hartrick admitted that he did not get to know Gauguin ‘in anything like the way I knew Van Gogh,’ since Gauguin was ‘a much more reserved and difficult person to become intimate with.’28 Gauguin returned to Paris on around 13 October and Hartrick left in late November.29
Memories of Van Gogh
It was in Paris that Hartrick was introduced to Van Gogh, through their mutual friend, the Australian artist John Russell (1858-1934). Russell had been in Paris since early 1885 and had joined the Atelier Cormon, where he later got to know Van Gogh. Hartrick first met Vincent at Russell's apartment, at 15 impasse Hélène, off avenue de Clichy.30 Shortly afterwards, Russell left for a visit to Sicily, renting his studio to Hartrick and the British artist Henry Ryland (1856-1924). At this point Van Gogh and Gauguin had not yet met, but it is possible that Hartrick told Van Gogh about his contact with Gauguin in Pont-Aven.
In 1939 Hartrick recalled: ‘all through the early part of 1887, Vincent frequently came to see me in the Impasse Hélène, to the horror of poor Ryland.’31 They also sometimes met at Theo's apartment at 54 rue Lepic, where Vincent was staying. ‘I have been to his rooms with him (I think they really belonged to his brother). Anyway he seemed to be living quite comfortably and showed me some very good Japanese prints, besides some lithographs and etchings by Matthew Maris, with whom he seemed to be very friendly.’32
Hartrick also reported Van Gogh's anger at not being able to sell his paintings, despite Theo's important position with Goupil: ‘He did not sell any of his work at that time, and used to rage from time to time that though connected with the picture trade no one would buy anything he did.’33 Hartrick was particularly struck by Van Gogh's interest in complementary colours: ‘He used to carry in either pocket a large lump of blue and red chalk: with these he was always ready to illustrate his theories on whatever was handy.’34 Hartrick was concerned that Van Gogh might damage Russell's apartment, so ‘as soon as he came in, I placed a newspaper or two conspicuously on the table, and on these he illustrated his themes or theories quite cheerfully, with lines of blue or red chalk at least a quarter of an inch thick.’35
A.S. Hartrick, Portrait of Van Gogh, 1930s, Amsterdam, Van Gogh Museum (Vincent van Gogh Foundation)
Van Gogh's ideas on light and colour made a deep impression on Hartrick: ‘He was particularly pleased with a theory that the eye carried a portion of the last sensation it had enjoyed into the next [...] the entering of a lamplit room out of the night increases the orange effect of light and in the contrary case, the blue. Hence, to depict it properly, according to the theory, it is necessary in the former case to include some blue in the picture and in the latter some orange. Van Gogh used to roll his eyes and hiss through his teeth with gusto, bring out the words “blue”, “orange”, complementary colours, of course.’36
In his 1913 memoir, Hartrick also gives an interesting description of his friend: ‘Van Gogh was a rather weedy little man, with pinched features, sandy hair and beard, and a light blue eye. He had an extraordinary trick of pouring out sentences in a mixture of Dutch, English, and French, then glancing quickly at you over his shoulder and hissing through his teeth as he finished a series. In fact, when excited, he looked more than a little mad: and this look Russell had caught exactly.’37
Hartrick also provides a fascinating insight into Vincent's character. Van Gogh was ‘extraordinarily sensitive to physical impressions, specially those of brightness or light. He was always in a state of wild excitement to explain to some one else the pleasure - or pain if you like - that he had received from something he had seen or imagined.’38 Hartrick then makes some perceptive comments about his friend's spontaneity: ‘Whatever Van Gogh got, he took from nature directly and on the spur of the moment, guided by a sort of instinct, like a dog on the scent of a trail [...]. In most aspects Van Gogh was personally as simple as
a child, expressing pleasure and pain loudly in a child-like manner. The direct way in which he showed his likes and dislikes was sometimes very disconcerting, but quite without malice or any conscious knowledge that he was giving offence.’39
There has been considerable discussion about when exactly Van Gogh studied at the Atelier Cormon, but Hartrick recalled that he knew him ‘about six months after he had left [there].’40 Hartrick then recounted an incident which is said to have involved a row between Cormon and his then-student Emile Bernard: ‘The story goes that Van Gogh, in great indignation, went round with a pistol to shoot Cormon, so much had he taken to heart this interference with the free expression of the individual.’41 Bernard was indeed expelled from the studio, but Van Gogh's supposed violent reaction is unlikely to have occurred and is not recorded by any of the other students. Hartrick also deliberately distances himself from this detail, stating that it was merely ‘a story,’ which had occurred before he had known Van Gogh. This appears to be the only time in his account of the two post-impressionists when Hartrick repeats a rumour.
Hartrick ended his reminiscences by concluding: ‘I frankly confess that neither myself, nor any of those I remember about me, imagined at that time that Van Gogh would be talked of as a great genius a few years later. We thought him a little cracked, but harmless, interesting, and certainly amusing at times. Always an artist in temperament, we thought his work too rudimentary and apparently unskilful in handling to appeal to us as students, many of whom could surpass it from that point of view.’42
Hartrick left Russell's accommodation when the Australian returned from Sicily, following the tragic death of Russell's infant son, Jean. ‘I had to move out and go to a hotel for the remainder of my time in Paris, and with this move I lost touch with Vincent.’ Hartrick himself left Paris at the end of 1887.43
Decades later, Hartrick drew portraits of both Van Gogh and Gauguin. These date from the 1930s, and were probably done for reproduction in A painter's pilgrimage. Hartrick made an ink and watercolour sketch of Van Gogh (fig. 4), which was published as the frontispiece of the autobiography. The Van Gogh Museum acquired the original work in 1997. Hartrick also did two portraits of Gauguin, one now lost and the other at the Glasgow Art Gallery.44 These works were probably based mainly on secondary sources (the John Russell portrait of Van Gogh and photographs or self-portraits of Gauguin), although they still give a very personal view of the two artists. Despite the fact that they were made half a century after his encounters with them, they may still be considered Hartrick's homage to the two painters he had known as a young man.
I would like to thank the following, who assisted my research: Michael and Audrey MacLeod, Ernst Vegelin van Claerbergen, Catherine Puget, Philip Dennis Cate, Herbert Schimmel, Jane Lindsey and Sheila Clarke.
Few other works done by Hartrick in France survive. One summer's day
, depicting a mother and child, may have been painted in Pont-Aven. It was once in the collection of Mr and Mrs Herbert D. Schimmel; see Phillip Dennis Cate, exhib. cat. The circle of Toulouse-Lautrec
, New Brunswick (Jane Voorhees Zimmerli Art Museum) 1986, no. 69, pp. 109-10. The work was sold by Sothebys.com on 4 April 2001. The titles of two other Hartrick paintings of this period are known from early exhibitions: Un blanchissage Breton
(Paris Salon, 1887, no. 1182, possibly the Courtauld Gauguin's studio
) and November in Finistère
(London, Royal Society of British Artists, Suffolk Street, 1887-88).
Both paintings had passed to Miss Black after Hartrick's death in 1950. They have been exhibited as follows: exhib. cat. An artist's pilgrimage: fifty years of painting
, London (Fulham Central Library) 1936, no. 23: Pont-Aven
(presumably the Courtauld's Village street
); exhib. cat. A.S. Hartrick: a memorial exhibition
, London (Arts Council) 1951, no. 1: Pont-Aven
(the dimensions are given as 5 × 9 inches, but this may have been a mistake and the work was probably the Courtauld's Village street
), and no. 2: The back of Gauguin's studio, Pont-Aven
; exhib. cat. Drawn from Nature
, Canterbury (Royal Museum), Rye (Art Gallery), Eastbourne (Towner Art
Gallery), Hove (Museum of Art) and Bristol (Royal West of England Academy) 1980-81, no. 52: Village street, Pont-Aven
and no. 54: The back of Gauguin's studio at Pont-Aven
; and The circle of Toulouse-Lautrec
, cit. (note 1), no. 68: Gauguin's studio at the Pont-Aven
[sic] and no. 70: Pont-Aven.
The picture is 48 × 61 cm and is signed and dated 86.
I am very grateful to Catherine Puget of the Musée de Pont-Aven for her comments on this work and on the Village street, Pont Aven.
It does, however, feature in the far distance of La ferme de Lezaven
(Dublin, National Gallery of Ireland), by the Irish artist Roderic O'Conor (1860-1940). His picture is dated 1894, when he worked in the Lezaven studio alongside Gauguin; see Roy Johnston, Roderic O'Conor
, Dublin 1992, no. 39, p. 194 and ill. 18.
The work is 54 × 81 cm and is signed and dated 1886
, with traces of an inscription, ending in ‘en’, presumably Pont-Aven.
6The Fulham Chronicle
(15 May 1936). The comment refers to no. 23 in the catalogue An artist's pilgrimage
, cit. (note 2), which is presumably the Courtauld picture (since virtually all the loans were from Hartrick and he is not known to have saved many other Pont-Aven works). The newspaper also reported: ‘An interesting point is that Mr Hartrick prepared the canvas himself - fifty years ago, and it is as good now as then.’
Gauguin told Van Gogh that he had initially wanted to give the painting to the
church at Pont-Aven (see Correspondance de Paul Gauguin
, ed. Victor Merlhès, Paris 1984, p. 230), and Emile Bernard claimed he then offered it to the Nizon church; see Richard Brettell et al.
, exhib. cat. The art of Paul Gauguin
, Washington (National Gallery of Art) & Chicago (The Art Institute) 1988-89, p. 103. In 1889 Gauguin also painted the Calvary statue located outside the Nizon church, although in a different setting, in The green Christ
(Brussels, Musées Royaux des Beaux-Arts de Belgique).
See A.S. Hartrick, Drawing: from drawing as an educational force to drawing as an expression of the emotions
, with a foreword by George Clausen, London 1921, 1928 (the second edition has brief references to Gauguin and Van Gogh on pp. 8-9), and idem, Lithography as a fine art
, Oxford 1932, with brief references to Gauguin and Van Gogh on pp. 33-34. Books Hartrick illustrated include Rudyard Kipling's Soldier tales
, London 1896, and George Eliot's Felix Holt
, London 1907, as well as a 12-volume set of the ‘Golden Poets’ (Longfellow, Keats, Wordsworth, etc), edited by Oliver Smeaton, London c. 1910.
The literature on Hartrick is sparse. In addition to his important autobiography (A painter's pilgrimage through fifty years
, Cambridge 1939) and the exhibition catalogues cited in note 2, the main articles are: Jules Roques, ‘Les artistes anglais: A.S. Hartrick,’ Le Courrier Français
(13 January 1895), pp. 8-9; F. Morley Fletcher, ‘Hartrick,’ Drawing & Design
3 (January 1923), pp. 303-10; Herbert Furst, ‘A.S. Hartrick, R.W.S. A note on an artist's temperament,’ Apollo 24 (August 1936), p.
90-92; Arnold Palmer, ‘Archibald Standish Hartrick, O.B.E., R.W.S.,’ The Old Water-Colour Society's Club
30 (1952-53), pp. 5-12; and Michael MacLeod, ‘A.S. Hartrick,’ The Artist
(August 1990), pp. 40-42.
Examples of critical comments on the work's reliability include the following: Correspondance
, cit. (note 7), p. 438: ‘Les souvenirs d'Archibald Standish Hartrick [...] furent rédigés trop tard pour n'avoir pas été parfais pervertis par ses lectures ultérieures’; Susan Alyson Stein, Van Gogh: a retrospective
, New York 1986, p. 81: ‘This account, written well after his acquaintance with Van Gogh in Paris, is a curious amalgam of reminiscence and secondary elaboration. It cannot be considered entirely accurate, particularly for chronology’; and Bogomila Welsh-Ovcharov in exhib. cat. Van Gogh à Paris
, Paris (Musée d'Orsay) 1988, p. 78 (note 3): ‘Hartrick, avec son mélange frustrant de chronologie inexacte et de souvenirs descriptifs précis [...].’
Hartrick, op. cit. (note 9), p. xi. Very few of Hartrick's papers appear to have survived, and none have been found from the 1880s.
A.S. Hartrick, ‘Post-Impressionism, with some personal recollections of Vincent Van Gogh and Paul Gauguin,’ The Imprint
1 (May 1913), pp. 305-18.
The Central School book does not appear to have been cited in the literature, other than a brief reference in Charles Mattoon Brooks, Vincent van Gogh: a bibliography
, New York 1942, p. 28, no. 337. Welsh-Ovcharov mentions that A painter's pilgrimage
is ‘based upon a private publication of 1916’ (Van Gogh in Perspective
, Englewood Cliffs, NJ 1974, p. 29), but she is presumably following Brooks. Hartrick refers to his text in a somewhat obscure reference in his autobiography: ‘Alan Seaby, Professor of Art at Reading University, arranged for me to give a set of lectures to his pupils at Reading on the subject of Modern Painting, and the lectures some years later were published in The Imprint
, after which J.H. Mason, the head of the printing department at the L.C.C. Central School, set them up in a little book with the aid of his class, and a few copies were printed and bound at the school for private circulation’; see Hartrick, op. cit. (note 9), p. 224. Because there was no specific reference to either post-impressionism, Van Gogh or Gauguin here this lead never seems to have been followed up.
My thanks to the archival staff. In the present article, citations of Hartrick's 1913 reminiscences are given from The Imprint
(op. cit. [note 12]), since this is the slightly more accessible of the three forms of the text.
The 1910-11 exhibition made a deep impression on Hartrick; see idem, op. cit. (note 9), pp. 222-24.
Some of Hartrick's reminiscences about Gauguin were also published in the catalogue of for the 1924 exhibition at the Leicester Galleries, but this short essay has only rarely been cited in the Gauguin literature, most writers instead using Hartrick's more accessible autobiography; see ‘Some reminiscences of Gauguin,’ exhib. cat. Catalogue of the Paul Gauguin exhibition
, London (Leicester Galleries) 1924, pp. 15-27.
On Van Gogh, the only book available to Hartrick in English would have been The letters of a post-impressionist, being the familiar correspondence of Vincent van Gogh
, translated and introduced by Anthony M. Ludovici, London 1912, but this early edition of the letters has very little on Van Gogh's Paris period. Elizabeth Du Quesne van Gogh's Personal recollections of Vincent van Gogh
was published in London in 1913, but since The Imprint
article appeared in May, it seems unlikely that Hartrick saw it before he wrote his text. There were no monographs on Gauguin in English at this time. Hartrick would, of course, have seen the catalogue of the 1910-11 post-impressionism exhibition, but this has comparatively little biographical material. The one author whom Hartrick cites is Julius Meier-Graefe, presumably a reference to his Modern art
, London 1908 - which in volume two has sections on Gauguin (pp. 59-66) and Van Gogh (pp. 202-12), but again includes very little on Gauguin's first visit to Pont-Aven or Van Gogh's stay in Paris. Hartrick may well have read French, but relatively little had been published on these two particular periods.
See Charles Chassé, Gauguin et le groupe de Pont-Aven
, Paris 1921, pp. 13-14.
Gauguin's letter to his wife Mette announcing his arrival is dated c. 25 July. He wrote: ‘Il y a des peintres hiver et été: des Anglais des Américains etc.’; Correspondance
, cit. (note 7), p. 133-34.
Hartrick, op. cit. (note 12), p. 312. Gauguin was then aged 38. A photograph taken in Pont-Aven in 1888 shows him with a beret, but it is unlikely that Hartrick would have seen this photograph by 1913; it is reproduced in Correspondance
, cit. (note 7), p. 215.
Hartrick, op. cit. (note 12), p. 312. The ‘sketch’ was almost certainly La baignade au moulin du Bois d'Amour
(Hiroshima Museum of Art). It is reproduced in colour in exhib. cat. Paul Gauguin
, Graz (Landesmuseum Joanneum) 2000, no. 18, p. 185. There has been some debate over whether the picture should be dated to 1886 or 1888, since the last digit on the painting is unclear: Georges Wildenstein (Paul Gauguin
, Paris 1964, vol. 1, W 272) gives 1888, although the Graz catalogue suggests 1886. Hartrick's comment appears to confirm the earlier year. See also Vojtĕech Jirat-Wasiutyński and H. Travers Newton Jr, Technique and meaning in the paintings of Paul Gauguin
, Cambridge 2000, pp. 63-64.
Vos is identified in Correspondance
, cit. (note 7), p. 439 (note 6).
The presence of Du Puigaudeau and Vos is confirmed in a contemporary publication: ‘Deux artistes, l'un M. Hubert Voos [sic], médaillé au dernier Salon de Paris, et l'autre son camarade d'atelier, M. du Puigaudeau, voulant, à la veille de leur départ, donner une marque de sympathie à la population’; see Union Agricole et Maritime de Quimperlé
(1 August 1886), quoted in André Cariou, Les peintres de Pont-Aven
, Rennes 1999, p. 49. Du Puigaudeau (at least) stayed several weeks longer, as a letter from Emile Bernard (in which he uses du Puigaudeau's nickname, Piccolo), dated 19 August 1887, confirms; cited in exhib. cat. Ferdinand du Puigaudeau
, Pont-Aven (Musée de Pont-Aven) 1998, p. 62. Gauguin himself boasted that he very quickly developed a reputation in Pont-Aven. In late July 1886, just a few days after his arrival, he wrote to Mette: ‘On me respecte comme le peintre le plus fort de Pont-Aven [...]. En tous cas celà me fait une réputation respectable et tout le monde ici (Américains, Anglais, Suédois, Français) se dispute mes conseils [...]’; Correspondance
, cit. (note 7), p. 137. Many years later Du Puigaudeau recalled his visit to Pont-Aven of 1886, but he included no significant details; see Le Fureteur Breton
(November-December 1919), p. 80.
, cit. (note 16), p. 22. Further confirmation that Gauguin used the Lezaven studio is Hartrick's 1886 painting of the building, which he later entitled Gauguin's studio
Hartrick, op. cit. (note 12), p. 314. Several geese are included in one of the illustrations in Randolph Caldecott, A sketch-book
, London 1883 (no. 12), although it is unclear if this is the image to which Gauguin referred. Gauguin's drawings of Pont-Aven geese include those in a sketchbook (René Huyghe, Le carnet de Paul Gauguin
, Paris 1952, p. 189) and on a sheet in the Louvre (reproduced in Denise Delouche, Gauguin et la Bretagne
, Rennes 1996, p. 23). Geese appear in Gauguin's Four Breton women
of 1886 (Munich, Bayerische Staatsgemäldesammlungen). Both Hartrick and Gauguin must also have known Henry Blackburn and Randolph Caldecott's Breton folk: an artistic tour in Brittany
, London 1880, which includes a delightful illustration of artists sitting outside the Pension Gloanec (p. 131).
, cit. (note 16), p. 20. The painting has not been identified, and may well be lost. It was the custom for artists to present paintings to the innkeeper, Marie-Jeanne Gloanec, for her saint's day on 15 August. In August 1886, for example, Gauguin gave her a still life, The white tablecloth
, now in a private collection in Japan. The autumn landscape could well have been a leaving present, on his departure in October.
Hartrick, op. cit. (note 12), pp. 313-14.
Gauguin planned to leave on 13 October (Correspondance
, cit. [note 7], p. 140) and Hartrick left in November (Hartrick, op. cit. [note 9], p. 39). As a postscript, it is interesting that Hartrick, an expert on lithography, many years later saw what he believed was an unrecorded Gauguin print (although it is possible that it was by one of his followers). He described it as ‘a small head of a Breton girl,’ which he dated to 1894. Hartrick came across it after the First World War at the Eldar Gallery in London; see Hartrick, Lithography
, cit. (note 8), p. 33.
Hartrick, op. cit. (note 9), p. 42. Russell is also mentioned in the 1913 essay (op. cit. [note 12], p. 308), but Hartrick goes in to more detail on his role in introducing him to Van Gogh in his 1939 memoirs.
Hartrick, op. cit. (note 12), p. 311. Van Gogh's links with Matthijs Maris are confirmed in his correspondence, but few of the relevant letters would have been published in English by 1913; this suggests that Hartrick's memories on this point were not influenced by later publications.
Ibid. Van Gogh wrote about complementary colours in a letter to Horace Livens (1862-1936) in August/October 1886 [459a/D572], but this was not published until 1929, long after Hartrick's essay. Van Gogh's use of blue and red chalk also recalls his box of wool samples, which interested him for their colour contrasts; the box is now in the Van Gogh Museum.
Ibid., pp. 307-08. One Van Gogh painting which mixes the effects of lamplight and darkness is the Café terrace at night
of 1888, now in the Kröller-Müller Museum (F 1519 JH 1579).
Ibid., p. 308. Hartrick here refers to the Russell portrait of Van Gogh now in the Van Gogh Museum. He further described the portrait as ‘splendid,’ saying it was ‘much more convincing as a likeness than any of Van Gogh's self portraits.’
Ibid., p. 307. Assuming that Hartrick met Van Gogh in December 1886, this suggests Van Gogh left the studio in about July. There has been considerable scholary debate over the period when Van Gogh was studying at Corman's.
Hartrick, op. cit. (note 12), p. 309.
Hartrick, op. cit. (note 9), pp. 52, 54.
The first was published in ibid., opposite p. 32, and the second is reproduced in Isabelle Cahn and Antoine Terrasse, exhib. cat. Gauguin und die Schule von Pont-Aven
, Munich (Kunsthalle) 1998, p. 133.