Jas de Bouffan, the Pool (1876)
painting 92 of 352 by Paul Cézanne

Jas de Bouffan, the Pool, 1876 by Paul Cézanne

Information about painting

Jas de Bouffan was the estate on the outskirts of Aix-en-Provence acquired by the artist’s father. Cézanne painted the house and large pool several times. The pool is shown in its most attractive form, since, in addition to the greenery, which provides the overall colour scheme, the architectural and sculptural appointments are also visible: the lion of yellow sandstone, the dolphin playfully flipping its tail, the gates, and an old building.

A detail quite unusual for Cézanne is included in the painting: the pool is being filled with water. In depicting the water flowing from two pipes or the reflections distorted by the ripples, Cézanne seems to succumb to the temptations of the Impressionist. Ordinarily he would have portrayed the mirror-like smoothness of still water. Nevertheless the painting is far from Impressionist: the large, orderly brushstrokes are alien to Impressionist mobility.

The landscape was painted from life, which accounts for why the grey-blue tone of the sky, the green of Provence and its yellow soil have been conveyed so exactly. The harmony of these tones displays a masterly grasp of colour.