Corot was a tireless traveler, and the extension of the network of French railroads in the 1850s widened the range of his summer journeys. In 1852, 1857, and 1863, he visited Dardagny, a small village near Geneva. This view, essentially unchanged today, was probably painted on Corot’s first visit. It is an excellent example of his remarkable ability to derive a poetic scene from a prosaic site.
Inscription: Signed and inscribed: (lower left) COROT; (center right, on wall) 48
sale, Hôtel Drouot, Paris, April 15, 1873, no. 28, as "Cour d'une maison rustique, avec escalier de bois et personnages," for Fr 605 to Fréret; Louis Fréret (from 1873); Albert Wolff, Paris (in 1875); T. Bascle, Paris (until 1883; his sale, Hôtel Drouot, Paris, April 12–14, 1883, no. 19, as "Rue de village," for Fr 4,400); Collis P. Huntington, New York (until d. 1900; his bequest to MMA with life interest to his widow, Arabella D. Huntington, later [from 1913] Mrs. Henry E. Huntington, 1900–d. 1924; life interest to their son, Archer Milton Huntington, 1924–terminated in 1925)
Paris. École Nationale des Beaux-Arts. "Exposition de l'œuvre de Corot," May 1875, no. 18 (as "Une rue de village, étude," lent by M. Albert Wolf [sic]).
Newark Museum. "19th-Century French and American Paintings from the Collection of The Metropolitan Museum of Art," April 9–May 15, 1946, no. 2 (as "Village Street, Dardagny").
Nashville. Fisk University. "[title not known]," April 20–August 15, 1951, no catalogue.
Atlanta University. "[title not known]," September 1, 1951–January 30, 1952, no catalogue.
New Orleans. Dillard University. "[title not known]," February 1–April 30, 1952, no catalogue.
San Francisco. California Palace of the Legion of Honor. "Barbizon Revisited," September 27–November 4, 1962, no. 11 (as "Village Street, Dardagny").
Toledo Museum of Art. "Barbizon Revisited," November 20–December 27, 1962, no. 11.
Cleveland Museum of Art. "Barbizon Revisited," January 15–February 24, 1963, no. 11.
Museum of Fine Arts, Boston. "Barbizon Revisited," March 14–April 28, 1963, no. 11.
Carouge. Château of Dardagny. September 9–10, 1978, no catalogue.
Naples. Museo di Capodimonte. "Capolavori Impressionisti dei Musei Americani," December 3, 1986–February 1, 1987, no. 9.
Milan. Pinacoteca di Brera. "Capolavori Impressionisti dei Musei Americani," March 4–May 10, 1987, no. 9.
New York. The Metropolitan Museum of Art. "Barbizon: French Landscapes of the Nineteenth Century," February 4–May 10, 1992, no catalogue.
Paris. Galeries Nationales du Grand Palais. "Corot 1796–1875," February 27–May 27, 1996, no. 111.
Ottawa. National Gallery of Canada. "Corot 1796–1875," June 21–September 22, 1996, no. 111.
New York. The Metropolitan Museum of Art. "Corot," October 29, 1996–January 19, 1997, no. 111.
Museum of Fine Arts, Houston. "The Masterpieces of French Painting from The Metropolitan Museum of Art: 1800–1920," February 4–May 6, 2007, no. 8.
Berlin. Neue Nationalgalerie. "Französische Meisterwerke des 19. Jahrhunderts aus dem Metropolitan Museum of Art," June 1–October 7, 2007, unnumbered cat.
Geneva. Musée Rath. "Corot en Suisse," September 24, 2010–January 9, 2011, no. 24 (as "Dardagny (près de Genève), une rue de village").
Alfred Robaut. L'Œuvre de Corot: Catalogue raisonné et illustré. [reprint 1965]. Paris, 1905, vol. 2, pp. 242–43, no. 718, ill.; vol. 4, p. 269, calls it "Dardagny (près Genève)—Une rue du village" and dates it 1850–60.
Robert L. Herbert. Barbizon Revisited. Exh. cat., California Palace of the Legion of Honor, San Francisco. Boston, 1962, p. 88, no. 11, ill. p. 95, dates it probably 1853, stating that it was during Corot's second visit to Dardagny following his first trip the previous year.
Charles Sterling and Margaretta M. Salinger. French Paintings: A Catalogue of the Collection of The Metropolitan Museum of Art. Vol. 2, XIX Century. New York, 1966, pp. 51–52, ill., call it "A Village Street—Dardagny"; suggest that Corot painted it in either 1852 or 1853 when he visited with Daubigny, adding that his third visit occured in 1863.
Germain Bazin. Corot. 3rd rev. ed. (1st ed., 1942; 2nd ed., 1951). Paris, 1973, p. 267, erroneously states that it was in the Salon of 1852.
Gary Tinterow et al. Capolavori impressionisti dei musei americani. Exh. cat., Museo di Capodimonte, Naples. Milan, 1987, pp. 28–29, no. 9, ill. (color).
Josine M. Eikelenboom Smits. "The Architectural Landscapes of Jean-Baptiste-Camille Corot." PhD diss., Stanford University, 1991, vol. 1, pp. 347–48; vol. 2, fig. 332, remarks that the wooden balcony attached to a stone house is a characteristic feature of Dardagny and is also depicted in another oil sketch, "Dardagny—The Chalet of the Old Farmers" (R719; private collection); mentions two pencil drawings depicting balconies related to our painting (R8931 and R8932, Musée du Louvre, Paris).
Michael Pantazzi inCorot. Exh. cat., The Metropolitan Museum of Art. New York, 1996, pp. 248–49, no. 111, ill. (color) [French ed., "Corot 1796–1875," Paris, 1996, pp. 310–11, no. 111, ill. (color)], dates it about 1853, stating that this was the first year Corot visited Dardagny; comments that although the Dardagny works are difficult to date with precision, the strong light, clearly defined architecture, and lucid conception of this work suggest a date in the earlier 1850s; mentions a related composition probably painted on the same occasion (R 719; private collection).
Gary Tinterow inThe Masterpieces of French Painting from The Metropolitan Museum of Art: 1800–1920. Exh. cat., Museum of Fine Arts, Houston. New York, 2007, pp. 27, 195, no. 8, ill. (color and black and white), states that Corot traveled to Dardagny in 1852, 1857 and 1863 and that this picture was probably painted during his first trip.
Vincent Pomarède inCorot en Suisse. Ed. Paul Lang. Exh. cat., Musée Rath, Geneva. [Paris], 2010, p. 35.
Paul Lang inCorot en Suisse. Ed. Paul Lang. Exh. cat., Musée Rath, Geneva. [Paris], 2010, p. 96, no. 24, ill. (color), dates it about 1853.
Corot painted this study in Dardagny, a tiny village near Geneva that he visited in 1852, 1857, and 1863. A related composition, probably painted at the same time, is in a private collection (Robaut 1905, no. 719; see Pantazzi 1996).