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The Madeleine by Eugene Galien Laloue

The Madeleine

In the late 18th century, the church dedicated to St Mary Magdalen fell into disrepair. Napoleon I challenged the architects of the day to desing a monument to the glory of his “Grande Armée”.

Vignon’s design won the day. It was the nearest to Napoleon’s specificaitons: “a temple, I said, not a church!”

Galien-Laloue - ses oeuvres

This very spontaneously-made watercolor is very different from Galien’s other works. He rarely worked on such a small canvas. And yet, he didn’t forget anything in the light of the scene.

The crowd, the Madeleine, everything is there.

Galien-Laloue - ses oeuvres

« Nature is a temple
Where living columns sometimes have a voice;
We walk through forests of symbols, words hard to decipher,
They watch and their eyes look familiar. »

Charles Beaudelaire

Galien-Laloue - ses oeuvres

« The traffic is congested. Some omnibuses are parked in front of two office-buildings. A crowd of passengers is waiting to gen on, grumbling and waving their order numbers. The coach-drivers are angry to have to slow-down. In the background, some rosy-cheeked young girls are arranging baskets of flowers under the porch-roof of the flower-market, huge electricity-driven streetcars are going round the square reaching their terminus before heading back for Saint-Denis or Asnières. The Place de la Madeleine is the passageway to the Grands Boulevards. »

Léo Clarétie

Galien-Laloue - ses oeuvres

« Doroy headed towards the Madeleine, following the crowd overwhelmed by the heat. The grands cafés were packed. People were served outside, drinking under the crude and radiant lights of the illuminated windows. »

Guy de Maupassant

Galien-Laloue - ses oeuvres

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is the author of the catalogues raisonnes on:

- Victor Gabriel Gilbert (1847-1935)
- Eugene Galien Laloue (1854-1941)
- Luigi Loir (1845-1916)
- Jean-Gabriel Domergue (1889-1962)

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