“This house in which there was no furniture or ornaments, was filled up by the presence of the artist, there existed a visible harmony between the two.”  Georges Riviere, art critic
             Cezanne’s studio in Aix en Provence.  Photo by Marie Dauenheimer.

Last year I had the unique experience of visiting Paul Cezanne’s (1839-1906) studio in Aix en Provence, France.  It was the last studio Cezanne would have and he would spend four productive years painting there.  The studio was build under Cezanne’s direction and completed in 1902.  The plot of land was selected to offer a view of Cezanne’s muse and often-painted motif, Mont Sainte Victoire.  It is estimated that Cezanne painted his beloved mountain over 100 times.
                                Painting by Cezanne of Mont Sainte Victoire.
I visited with my daughter on a drizzly afternoon in April. Lilacs and other flowering trees were blooming outside the studio. The building is a solid structure, with a yellow stucco exterior and muted salmon colored shutters.  While none of Cezanne’s paintings are on view at the studio you get a sense of the artist through what is left behind, his still life props, easel and other accouterments.  This presence and sense of the artist is the reason I love visiting artist’s studios and homes. 
                                            Cezanne’s studio, interior view.
Cezanne is said to have kept regular business hours for painting.  He arrived at the studio in the morning and worked until evening surrounded by the blue gray walls and the cherished objects, bowls, sculptures and skulls, that fill his canvasses.  Large windows offered both southern and northern exposures.
Visiting Cezanne’s Studio in Aix en Provence, France
                                       Cezanne’s studio, interior view.

After Cezanne’s death in 1906 the studio was not used for 15 years. Cezanne’s son sold the studio in 1921 and finally the studio opened to the public in 1952.
Visiting Cezanne’s Studio in Aix en Provence, France
                     A still life painting by Cezanne featuring objects in his studio.
If you are in Provence I highly recommend a visit to the studio as a homage to Cezanne and his masterful works. For more information on visiting the studio go to www.atelier-cezanne.com