Having assimilated and interpreted the aggressive fauve palette, Marquet progressed towards more modernist reductions of tone and form. Captivated by water, Marquet adored traveling and used ports and aquatic scenes as the principal subject of his oeuvre. Water became almost a tool for abstraction, enabling him to develop his own intuitive minimalism, capturing the essence of a scene from the scarcest of touches.
After traveling across Spain in 1932, with the Camoins, Marquet and wife Marcelle continued on towards eastern Europe, finally stopping in Galatz on the banks of the Danube. Marquet found the working conditions too static however, so borrowing a friend’s boat, headed out on the river. Marquet was immediately seduced by the flow of aquatic traffic and network of waterways. The subtle colours, nuances and variations of light on water inspire him to explore Vienna by boat. Traveling slowly throughout spring 1933, he paints numerous watercolours which take in the city and surrounding countryside. The subtle tones and soft washes within this watercolor are characteristic of the more sombre colours which tend to coincide with Marquet’s more northerly journeys in Europe. Within this work depicting houses along the Danube, Marquet combines subtle tones with warmer and brighter reds and greens, to capture brilliantly the changeable springtime atmosphere. Through his characteristic minimalism, the scarcest tones of the sky and water become interpretations of space, and the simplest of touches evoke the clouds travelling by.
Antoine Laurentin (purchased from the above)
'Albert Marquet, Voyages', 14 April - 17 May 2008, no. 15, Connaught Brown Gallery, London
Marcelle Marquet, 'Le Danube, voyage de printemps', Lausanne, 1954.
This work is accompanied by a certificate of authenticity from The Wildenstein Institute, dated 15th April 2004.