ALBERT (OR ALBRECHT) SCHENCK (1828-1901)
- PAGE 12 -
L'ÉCHIR (1880) &
SCHENCK PAINTING OF UNKNOWN TITLE
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This work comes from the website of the City of Écouen, near Paris, France, where the artist lived for most of his life. He even has a street there named after him - 'Rue Auguste Schenck'. Two postcards which show the street are low on page 04.
For many years, I could not tell from the City of Écouen website, the name of the work or exactly where the work was in Écouen or indeed, come to think of it, whether the work was in fact owned by the City of Écouen at all. And then, I could not find the image on their website any more.
But, the City of Écouen has changed its website & the painting is again visible - on this page. And the work is now identified as being 'L'Échir', a long lost Schenck work to the webmaster.
In June 2011, Gilbert Rousseau, of the Écouen tourist office was in touch (thanks so much, Gilbert!) & advises as follows:
Le tableau appelé L’ECHIR est effectivement exposé à l’Hôtel de ville de notre cité. Ce grand tableau est un don d’A. SCHENCK ou de ses descendants à notre commune.
A. SCHENCK est venu habiter notre commune en 1862 et y est décédé en 1900.
Une collection de l’école d’Ecouen est visible à l’Hôtel de ville et réuni outre ce SCHENCK des toiles de Paul SEIGNAC, Léon DANSAERT, C. B. D’ENTRAYGUES, Louis LASSALLE-CABAILLOT, Paul LORILLON, Gaston et Jean Pierre HAAG, Félix GARDON, Charles Edouard FRERE, Pierre Edouard FRERE, J. B. DUFFAUD, Luigi CHIALIVA, Théophile Emmanuel DUVERGER et Victor NAVLET.
Which, I believe, advises that the work is on display at the Town Hall of the City of Écouen, along with artworks of a great many other Écouen artists. That the artist came to live in Écouen in 1862 & died there in 1900. And that 'L'Échir' was, in fact, a gift to the City by the Schenck family.
One matter remains! I have never been successful in trying to translate the name of the work (L'Échir) into English. Can anybody help in that regard? In the white text here, the work's name was translated/described in 1884 as 'Snow Squall in the Auvergne Mountains'.
Re the meaning of 'L'Échir', F. Meunier, of France, has kindly come to the rescue! In a guestbook message in Jul. 2012 he states as follows:-
Referring to the painting 'L'échir' on page 12, I understand that the meaning of 'l’echir' could be a problem, even here in France!
L’échir, which should have been written 'l’écir', but pronounced indeed 'l'échir', is an old Occitan word, It is the name of the cold wind from the NE which covers with snow the mountains of Auvergne.
This is exactly what the painting represents: a strong blow of cold wind with abundant and penetrating snow (brrr). This word is used (seldomly) locally, mainly for traditional crafts. Google for 'ecir' returns mainly names of typical restaurants or producers of sheep cheese in Auvergne!
Since the word 'échir' is so much appropriate to the work of August Schenck, it had to be clarified.
Thank you so much M. Meunier!
The next work is an oil on canvas painting of 35-1/2" x 55-1/4" & signed 'Schenck' in lower right, that sold for U.S. $4,600 on Jan. 5/6 2002 via Brunk Auctions of Asheville, Carolina. They believed the artist to be Danish.
More when I get more! Maybe YOU could provide new data or could provide a clue as to where new data about this work (or indeed any other Schenck work) might be found. I would truly welcome your input.
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