Artwork by Charles Edouard Huot,  Interior with Seated Figures

Charles E. Huot
Interior with Seated Figures

oil on canvas
signed lower right
22.25 x 27.25 ins ( 56.5 x 69.2 cms )

Auction Estimate: $8,000.00$6,000.00 - $8,000.00

Price Realized $6,000.00
Sale date: June 8th 2023

Private Collection
Born in Quebec City, Charles Edouard Huot moved to Paris at age nineteen to attend the École des Beaux-arts and study in the workshop of Alexandre Cabanel. He participated in numerous exhibitions there, including the1876 Salon. He married Louise Schlachter in 1885, returned to Canada in 1886 on the promise of a large commission of painting the Church of the Holy Saviour in Quebec City. This project firmly established Huot’s career, and it led to many more commissions from religious and political groups.

In “Interior with Seated Figures”, Huot depicts the more pared-down subject of a French-Canadian interior scene featuring a couple, known as le père and la mère Godbout of Ile d’Orléans, and their dog. The woman is calmly knitting, and the man leans back on his chair with his hands crossed over an orange hat in his lap. The room, though minimally decorated, contains many household objects and subtle details: a broom and a hanging pot in the right corner, two portrait sketches on the wall, including one of Wilfred Laurier, former Prime Minister of Canada, a crucifix and a kettle above the burning fireplace, and two pots with red flowers sit on the left windowsill, where a glimpse of light shines into the room. Huot has created an intimate scene that gives a glimpse into an authentic Quebecois household of the time.

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Charles Edouard Huot
(1855 - 1930)

Charles Huot was born in Quebec City in 1855. Following studies in Sainte-Anne-de-la-Pocatière and the École normale Laval in Quebec City, he obtained a scholarship for five years at the École des beaux-arts in Paris, and studied under Lefevre Niedermeyer and Alexandre Cabanal. He left at age 23 to travel around Europe and worked for a period of time in France as an illustrator.

Huot took part in the Salon de Paris in 1877 and earned an honourable mention. In 1886, he won a silver medal at the Blanc et Noir exhibition in Paris. He spent a total of 14 years in Europe. After returning to Canada in 1886, he settled in Quebec City where he produced many religious and historical paintings including his well-known canvases for the Quebec provincial government “Le premier parlement canadien” which hangs over the Speaker’s chart in the Legislative Assembly, and his “L’Ouverture du Conseil Souverain” for the Legislative Council. Both paintings are very large and show his fine craftsmanship and depth of knowledge of his subjects through considerable research. He also did a number of landscapes and portraits.

In 1903, Charles Huot returned to Europe with his family. After his wife died, in 1907, he returned to Quebec. His work then took a definite focus on painting history, with the work of the Palais législatif that would occupy him until his death, in Quebec City, in 1930.

Source: "A Dictionary of Canadian Artists, Volume II”, compiled by Colin S. MacDonald, Canadian Paperbacks Publishing Ltd, Ottawa, 1979