Born in Mauritius, Le Sidaner moved to Paris in 1880 where he studied at the Ecole des Beaux-Arts. In the French capital he encountered art that was to shape his own: the painterly technique developed by the Impressionists, notably Monet, and the mysterious and compelling atmospheres favoured by the Symbolists. Over time Le Sidaner brought these two generally contrasting strands together in his own art, creating works that pay homage to the beauty and mystery of the natural world.
Increasingly self-assured by positive critical reception, Le Sidaner’s technique, style and ambition were already set by the turn of the twentieth century. In 1928 the stunning impressions of southern France enhanced his works still further, and he moved towards creating new compositional arrangements inspired by the radiant views of Provence. In the ancient medieval village of Bormes Le Sidaner encountered a world saturated with colour and fragrance, picturing the golden mimosa trees in full bloom.
While Le Sidaner did not pursue symbolist imagery, he did paint with a desire to evoke poetic atmospheres. As he would often point out to his students, no landscape was worth painting unless it was enhanced by some play of light. To this end he was known to rearrange the position of flowers and foliage if he felt it would add greater impact to a work. In this beautiful painting Le Sidaner captures dappled rays of sun filtering through the trees’ branches, throwing patches of cool shade across his narrow pathway.
As is typical L'Allée des Mimosas relates to a larger painting created in the same year. In 1930 he took to exhibiting his studies on panel alongside the full scale compositions, which he showed at both the Salon and Galerie Georges Petit. Here they were widely remarked upon for their freedom of execution and intuitive use of colour.
During 1930 Le Sidaner also enjoyed the privilege of becoming Officer of the Order of Leopold, as well as entering the Académie des Beaux-Arts. He was elected President of the academy seven years later, a role he held until his death in 1939.