Victor-Jean Nicolle (French, 1754-1826) Landscape with a Man and Ruins. Brush and sepia on paper. 2 2/8 x 4 1/4 inches; 71 x 105 mm
Provenance: Collection of Jean-Camille Jammes (Lugt Supplement 1430a, lower center, recto)

The most important collector of Nicolle drawings, Jean-Camille Jammes, compiled an album of 240 drawings, many of which were sold at a single auction in Paris, November 1953. (L.1430a),

The portrayal of the seated peasant describes a poignant moment of a man lost in contemplation. Nicolle executes the ruins in rich detail, an aspect also found in the surrounding foliage and grassy slopes. The delicate handling of brown washes fits the subject matter in its softness, and creates a dreamlike atmosphere with subtle gradations of pale and dark washes.