Charles-Henri Contencin ( 1898 - 1955 )

The Matterhorn seen from Riffelsee, Zermatt, Switzerland

The Matterhorn seen from Riffelsee, Zermatt, Switzerland

oil on panel, 13¼ x 16in. (33.5 x 41cm.)

Peaks & Glaciers 2021 cat p.15

item sold

The dark triangle of the Riffelhorn casts a deep shadow and reflection over the Riffelsee which, in turn, mirrors the inverted pyramid of the Matterhorn far off across the Gornergrat. In this satisfying and bold composition Contencin managed to conjure up one of Zermatt’s most famous views with an orange primed panel and his trusted palette knife. The lake is laid in with horizontal bands of paint and the Matterhorn painted in a refined mix of cadmium red and ultramarine to render as accurately as possible the purple gneiss rock caught by the midday sun. A tweak of the palette to a greener hue separates the mostly clear sky from the smooth surface of the icy lake. Contencin could rely on a lifetime’s experience in the mountains to be able to sketch such an oft repeated moutainscape this convincingly.

Charles-Henri Contencin