In this ongoing series for Fine Art Today, we take a longer look at the history and features of a soon-to-be-available artwork of note. This week: Felix Hidalgo, “Chateau d’If.”
Félix Resurrección Hidalgo y Padilla (1855-1913) is often acknowledged as one of the great Filipino painters of the late 19th century. Largely considered an Impressionist, Hidalgo received numerous awards throughout his career, including a Silver Medal at the 1884 Exposicion General de Bellas Artes in Madrid.
Hidalgo’s fascination with a variety of subjects, including the violence and unpredictability of the sea, is well documented. Heading to auction via León Gallery on June 10 in the Philippines is one of the more outstanding examples of the artist’s seascapes. Hidalgo’s command of oil in the picture is tangible, as the painterly quality of the brushstrokes enhances the volatile subject. Although he is considered an Impressionist, some have noted possible hints of the monumental Romantic painter J.M.W. Turner in Hidalgo’s work, especially noteworthy in the sky of “Chateau d’If.”
Via León Gallery, “Hidalgo’s seascape combines the strengths of both luminism and impressionism, even if he adheres to neither. His dramatic, even impressionistic skies amid waves in some instances diverge from the becalmed seas of late 19th century painting, manifested best in the luminist style in the United States — which he never visited. Luminism is characterized by attention to detail and the hiding of brushstrokes, while impressionism is characterized by lack of detail and an emphasis on brushstrokes. Having taken up painting at the Academia de Dibujo y Pintura in Intramuros early in his career, he remained a classicist, preferring to work in the style recognized by the art establishment, despite the furor over the Impressionists in the Europe of 1884. Thus, Hidalgo’s depictions of the stormy sea mark one significant extreme of the vast range of Philippine art’s landscape traditions.” Auction estimates are between $87,000 and $115,000.
To learn more, visit León Gallery.
This article was featured in Fine Art Today, a weekly e-newsletter from Fine Art Connoisseur magazine. To start receiving Fine Art Today for free, click here.

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Andrew Webster is the former Editor of Fine Art Today and worked as an editorial and creative marketing assistant for Streamline Publishing. Andrew graduated from The University of North Carolina at Asheville with a B.A. in Art History and Ceramics. He then moved on to the University of Oregon, where he completed an M.A. in Art History. Studying under scholar Kathleen Nicholson, he completed a thesis project that investigated the peculiar practice of embedded self-portraiture within Christian imagery during the 15th and early 16th centuries in Italy.


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