André Dunoyer de Segonzac
N05069 La Ferme dans la Terre
(The Farm on the Estate) 1923
Inscribed 'A.D. de Segonzac' b.r.
Oil on canvas, 23 x 31 (60 x 81)
Bequeathed by Frank Hindley Smith 1940
Prov: Frank Hindley Smith, Southport (purchased from the artist through the Independent Gallery, London, 1923)
Exh: Paintings, Drawings and Etchings by André Dunoyer de Segonzac, Independent Gallery, London, October 1923 (1) as 'La Ferme dans la Terre'; The CAS: Loan Exhibition of Modern Foreign Painting, Colnaghi's Galleries, London, June-July 1924 (57); Loan Collection of Pictures, Castle Museum, Norwich, October-November 1925 (75); Dunoyer de Segonzac, Independent Gallery, London, June 1927 (20); Dunoyer de Segonzac, Galerie Charpentier, Paris, May-July 1960 (20); Dunoyer de Segonzac, Orangerie des Tuileries, Paris, February-May 1976 (23, repr.)
Lit: Paul Jamot, Dunoyer de Segonzac (Paris 1929), pp.144, 232, repr. p.169; Paul Jamot, Dunoyer de Segonzac (Paris 1941), p.180; Claude Roger-Marx, Dunoyer de Segonzac (Geneva 1951), pp.71, IV, repr. pl.78; Dunoyer de Segonzac, Dessins 1900-1970 (Geneva 1970), pp.112-13
Repr: L'Art et les Artistes, N.S. ix, 1924, p.265
The artist wrote on 12 August 1955 that this farm is situated close to the little hamlet of Serbonne near Crécy-en-Brie, in the Vallée du Grand Morin, and that the picture was painted in the winter of 1923-4. In his notes on this period in Dessins 1900-1970, he added:
'My first visit in 1923-1924 to the Vallée du Grand Morin was a revelation to me. I was looking in the Ile-de-France for a region which had preserved its purity and poetry intact, without being disfigured by rows of summer-houses, imitation Renaissance châteaux, pseudo Basque chalets, all those monstrosities which too frequently invade the countryside fifty kilometres around Paris.
'It was in the hamlet of Serbonne, in a humble inn, that I installed myself in November 1923 to collect my thoughts and work in solitude and calm on winter landscapes which I have always preferred in their gravity to the brilliance of the summer sun ...’
'Then in Spring 1924, I left Serbonne for Villiers-sur-Morin.'
Though this account is no doubt correct in other respects, he was evidently mistaken about the year of his visit, which according to Paul Jamot's monograph of 1929 took place in the winter of 1922-3, not 1923-4. This earlier dating is borne out by the fact that the Tate's picture was exhibited in London as early as October 1923.
The painting has also been known as 'La Ferme dans les Terres' and 'Route sur la Ferme'.
Ronald Alley, Catalogue of the Tate Gallery's Collection of Modern Art other than Works by British Artists, Tate Gallery and Sotheby Parke-Bernet, London 1981, pp.197-8, reproduced p.197