Rue Cortot, Paris

Date Created
15 in x 11 in x ;24" x 21"
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Historical Context
The cobblestone Rue Cortot in Montmatre was home for many well known artists throughout the years. The street is identified in this watercolor by a sign placed high on the building at the left.The 1902 Second Exhibition at the Toledo Museum of Art included a watercolor painting titled, "A Corner of the Town." As this exhibition included several of Alten's French paintings, it is possible that this painting, Rue Cortot, Paris, was the painting shown. The exhibition is therefore noted here for possible reference. While the exact location of Alten's Paris residence is unknown, the area around the cobble-stoned Rue Cortot housed many artists and provided numerous picturesque urban scenes.

Watercolor is one of the oldest and most universal mediums in art, made of pigment ground in gum mixed with a water solution. It allows for a range and variety of looks through the ability to play with the transparency of pigment. Alten shows this by giving the walls of the buildings the realistic texture of stone and the softness of the shadows on the ground from the grey sky.
The various residences along the cobblestoned Rue Cortot in Montmatre was the home of many famous artists through the years. The street is identified by a sign placed high on the building at the left in Alten's watercolor. Signed/inscr/dated: M. Alten/Paris/99 lower left
Gift of George H. and Barbara Gordon

Painting Origin