Georges Seurat


This haunting work belongs to a remarkable body of landscapes that Seurat drew in the early 1880s. A lone figure moves along a path through a park setting with hilly terrain, tended lawns, and tall trees. Seurat applied Conté crayon with varying pressure to the textured paper, creating luminous middle tones counterpoised with solid blacks. With its mysterious, twilit atmosphere, Landscape demonstrates the artist’s unique tenebrist style—characterized by contrasting shadows and dramatic illumination—which he would develop throughout the decade.

Georges Seurat
French, 1859–1891
Landscape, ca. 1881
Black Conté crayon
The Art Institute of Chicago, gift of Richard and Mary L. Gray; 2019.866
Gray Collection Trust, Art Institute of Chicago
Photography by Jamie Stukenberg, Professional Graphics Inc.