St Peter, Aix-en-Provence II

Watercolour on 300 lb Paper,
76 cm x 56 cm (30" x 22")

(Private Collection, Ontario)

This watercolour is larger than its companion piece St Peter, Aix-en-Provence I. It is painted for volume; the form of the figure has been simplified and filled in with gouache. There is a subtler gradation of tone throughout, and even the deepest shadow is not true black. Zooming in on a detail in this way produces the shallow picture plane developed by Cézanne. This problematizes the painting surface, refusing to allow viewers to gain a satisfactory illusion of depth, such as might be provided by a traditional vista, and instead forcing them to attend to the paradox of representing a three-dimensional object on a flat plane.

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