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Paris. Cafés, amis et impressions
Pontoise, Centre of the village
Camille Pissarro. 1867
I became intimately acquainted with Monet, Guillaumin and Cézanne,
artists who, like me, were impatient with academic conventionalism and the artistic dictatorship of the Salons. Thanks to these solid and beautiful friendships, I had the opportunity to share my artistic experiences with someone, knowing at the same time that I was not alone in my pictorial 'battle'. Grateful for the fraternal friendship that bound me to Cézanne,
I can rightly say that, at Pontoise, we influenced each other. I owe a great deal to him. I decided to move several times to Pontoise. The varied and sometimes very rugged topography of the town, built on a bank of the Oise, lent itself well to unusual depictions and was an inexhaustible theme.
What I appreciated most about this place was the continuous alternation between city and country subjects. In various paintings I represented Pontoise, as in Orchard with trees in blossom in spring. I felt that Pontoise was exactly the place where the beauty of the spring garden had a magical charm and, in fact, it was here that I was able to capture,
in the most original way, the wonder of nature waking up. Even though I was outside the capital, Paris remained the epicentre of my production, as, indeed, did all the Impressionists.
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