Pastoral

Born Morges, Switzerland 1814, arrived Australia 1865, died Victoria 1888


Louis Buvelot arrived in Australia in 1865 as an accomplished painter with a strong reputation in Europe. Following his studies in Switzerland and Paris in the early 1830s, Buvelot spent eighteen years working under the patronage of the Emperor of Brazil, Dom Pedro II, who had provided him with a studio and purchased his work.

Buvelot brought with him to Australia the technique of plein air tonal impressionism, and had a significant influence on the founders of the Heidelberg School and the development of Australian landscape painting. By the late 1860s Buvelot had adapted his European technique to suit the Australian vista, changing his palette and formal manner into a looser style reflective of contemporary aestethics. He travelled Victoria on painting excursions and particularly enjoyed the landscapes of the Yarra Valley, Heidelberg and Lilydale. The composition and style of Pastoral (1871) is representative of the works the artist painted during this period.

Examples of his paintings are held in the collections of the National Gallery of Australia, all state galleries and many regional galleries. His work was included in The Great Australian Art Exhibition 1788–1988, Art Gallery of South Australia and touring all state galleries (1988–89), and Swiss Artists in Australia 1771–1991, Art Gallery of New South Wales and touring nationally (1991).