ExhibitionCarnegie Institute, Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, nr. 254
Salon Quatriennal de Belgique, Liège 1936
Retrospectieve Valerius De Saedeleer, Museum van Deinze en Leiestreek 2006, cat. nr. 95
Literature"Valerius De Saedeleer" Jean Milo, Les Cahiers de Belgique, Brussels 1934, ill.
"Sint-Martens-Latem" Johan De Smet, Tielt 2000, p. 170 ill.
"Valerius De Saedeleer" Piet Boyens, 2006, nr. 95, p. 146 ill.
DocumentationTHE PURE LANDSCAPE
Valerius De Saedeleer was one of the first artists to settle in Sint-Martens-Latem in 1898. The impressionist style of his tutor Franz Courtens could no longer appeal to him, so he started to search for his own personal visual language. The major exhibition of Flemish Primitives in Bruges in 1902 may have contributed to the typical style that De Saedeleer used from that moment on.
"The Country Road (Winter Landscape)" (1931) depicts a pristine white snow landscape, vast and nearly empty. Covered under a white blanket, silence prevails. The country road, flanked by whimsical outlines of trees, slices the composition in half. Above the bare horizon line, the heavy sky has been purified, composed of the same shades of gray that can be found in the land. The palette is almost in grisaille, were it not for the fact that the artist's talent creates a masterly shading.
De Saedeleer loves snow as an aesthetic motif. "Old barn" (1922, lot 154) is also covered with a thick winter carpet. The painter applies the same minimalist palette in the work "Snow Landscape with Rising Moon" (ca. 1928, lot 166), in which moonlight creates a mysterious light effect. De Saedeleer creates spirited landscapes that are beyond time and space. Nature is purified to its perfection. The minimalism and calm contained in his works evoke a certain modesty and give way to a spiritual experience.