Etienne Allegrain (Paris, 1644 – Paris, 1736)
Landscape of Lazio (Italy)
There is little information we have regarding the life and works of Etienne Allegrain; we know him as a skilled landscape painter, very attached to the French tradition of this genre. In fact, observing his work, it is immediately clear that the painter’s main source of inspiration is Nicolas Poussin, from whom he learns the mixture between the landscape as a place representing the complexity of human experience and the insertion – even in the distance – of ruins glimpses derived from antiquity.
The depiction of landscapes so authentic and in which the presence of man in the scene is completely negligible, really makes us understand the need that the seventeenth-century artist felt in making nature the absolute protagonist of the picture, capable of expressing – on a par with the painting of history- the fullness of human feelings.
We do not know if the painter has ever been in Italy, although less so in Rome, but the insertion of architectural elements within such an uncontaminated context such as the historiated column and a circular building rather similar to the Pantheon, remove any doubts about the lesson learned from Poussin.
Our reference: A03722