Oil on Canvas Painting of an Elegant Reader, in a 19th Century Paris Interior, by Edouard Gelhay
Edouard GELHAY was born in 1856 in Braine (Aisne). At the age of 18 he came to Paris and enrolled in the classes of Bouguerreau, Cabanel and Tony Robert-Fleury.
It is in a style borrowed from Impressionism that he composes his paintings. His favorite subjects are genre scenes and portraits,
He is fond of genre scenes, portraits, landscapes at the water’s edge, which he treats in an impressionist manner.
His paintings evoke a sweet romantic atmosphere.
He exhibited at the Salon des Artistes Français as early as 1879, won a medal in 1886, then was excluded from the competition in 1889 (artists out of the competition could only compete for the large medals of honor because they had already received the highest awards at the Paris Salons).
Between 1893 and 1895, he devoted himself to commissions for portraits of Prince Victor Napoleon, entirely absorbed by the reproduction of the portraits of the members of the Bonaparte family at the Museum of Versailles.
He was made Chevalier of the Legion of Honor in 1909.
He died in Paris in 1939.
His paintings can be found in the following Museums:
Arras, Flers, La Rochelle, Lille, Morlaix, Nemours, Tourcoing, Senlis
Our painting represents an elegant woman, enjoying a delicate moment of relaxation, reading a book, in a richly decorated bourgeois interior.
The painting presents us with a moving testimony of the time…
Under his brush, the artist details with infinite precision, all the attention paid to the decoration of an interior of this period. We can see many carpets, a clock on a chest, paintings hanging on the walls, pottery and earthenware, silverware on the fireplace and a piano waiting to be awakened.
But there is also rich furniture, a fireplace in each room and a bronze chandelier on the ceiling, a sign of immense comfort for this end of the 19th century.
Everything emanates voluptuousness, ease and comfort.
The subject is treated with touching delicacy by the artist’s play on the warm tones of his palette to reinforce the effect of softness and comfort of this interior, insisting on the most subtle details, such as the richness of the carpet patterns or the details of the clock. The delicate study of the exquisite textiles displayed enhances the comfort displayed.
An original oil on canvas signed in the lower left-hand side in a Lovely 19th Century Gilded wooden frame.
The Canvas measures 21 1/2 X 25 1/2 inches
The Gilt Wood Frame measures 26 X 31 inches