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The Gust of Wind

Gustave Courbet
The Gust of Wind
c. 1865
Oil on canvas

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Gustave Courbet is arguably one of the most original painters of the 19th century. He was a major figure in the development of Realism, a painting style characterized by direct observation. His spontaneous painting technique inspired the Impressionists, and many artists to come.

The Gust of Wind depicts a storm rapidly advancing over a stretch of land probably in the Fontainebleau Forest, southeast of Paris. An unseen current of wind rips the clouds across the sky. The mountains at the horizon are delicately painted, while the rocky landscape, the pool, and the craggy, wind-bent trees are described with the rough marks of brush and palette knife. This is Courbet´s largest canvas (approx. 58 x 91 inches) devoted solely to landscape.

Museum purchase with funds provided by Caroline Wiess Law

Related Exhibitions & Collections:

Courbet and the Modern Landscape

In the Forest of Fontainebleau: Painters and Photographers from Corot to Monet

European Painting and Sculpture