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Prints and Authors in the Time of Manet

Camille Pissarro
French, 1830–1903

Wooded landscape at the Hermitage, Pontoise (Paysage sous bois, à l’Hermitage, Pontoise)

Soft ground etching, aquatint and drypoint, 1879
Purchased with funds from the Libbey Endowment, Gift of Edward Drummond Libbey, 1984.81

Wooded Landscape at the Hermitage, Pontoise is widely considered Camille Pissarro’s most important print and the finest example, by any artist, of an Impressionist landscape etching. Pissarro produced this print, based on an 1879 painting of the same title, for a proposed journal of prints, Le Jour et la Nuit. Although the journal, conceived by Edgar Degas, was never realized, Pissarro devoted much care in producing this print which went through six versions, or states. Of all the Impressionist artists, Pissarro was the most articulate in the techniques of printmaking. Here he used novel applications of aquatint and soft-ground etching to render the textures and light effects on tree trunks, foliage, and the village in the background.