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There are several points at which the conventional language of art criticism breaks down. The French painter, Henri Le Sidaner, the obscure but distinguished subject of an exhibition at the likewise relatively obscure but distinguished Museum of Modern Art Saitama, is one of these.

With a career that started in the latter decades of the 19th century and continued until his death in 1939, Le Sidaner is often categorized as either a symbolist or an intimist painter.

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