Le Burg à la croix

  • Victor Hugo (1802 – 1885)

  • 72.3 x 125.8 cm; with frame: 115.5 x 169.5 cm
  • 1850 and1871 (frame)
  • Graphite pencil, pen, brush, brown ink and wash, black ink wash, charcoal, crayon, heightened with white gouache, gold highlights, rubbed areas, reserves, use of stencils on beige paper mounted on canvas stretched over a frame
  • MVHP D 0040
  • Victor Hugo’s home /Don Paul Meurice in 1903

Le Burg à la croix is his major work in terms of format, quality and technical complexity, the extent of its composition and the theme that takes us to the heart of the graphic poetry of Victor Hugo. Uniting in a common vision memories of the castles along the Rhine and those of Spain, Hugo offers this picture bathed in moonlight where the walls of the palace are reflected in a river shrouded in mist. In the foreground, a bridge is topped by a crucifix inspired by a Byzantine cross that Hugo had and which is still in Hauteville House.

Fearing that it would disappear, Paul Meurice bought this large drawing in June 1852, at the time of the sale of Victor Hugo’s furniture when he left to go into exile. He wanted to return it to Hugo on his return to France, but the poet refused and added the frames painted with a dedication, the dates of which refer to his stay with Paul Meurice.

Notice's author : Gérard Audinet