le remorqueur

by Marie Francois Firmin Girard


Out Of Stock

DIMENSIONS: (unframed)18.11 x 24.02 in./46.00 x 61.00 cm
SIGNATURE: Signed lower right
MEDIUM: oil on canvas

Out Of Stock

Catalogue No: 4075 Categories: , ,

Although not as well known today as Monet, Renoir and Pissarro, the academically-trained Impressionist Firmin-Girard enjoyed considerable commercial and critical attention during his lifetime for his luminous landscapes, genre subjects and paysages animés. Although he had been a student of Gerome in Paris, Firmin-Girard soon began embracing the challenges to traditional painting posed by Manet and the Impressionists. His work began exploring images of contemporary life, and most importantly, endorsed formal innovations drawn from the influence of Japanese art. In the present work, for example, he adopts a more oblique angle of perspective on his primary subject, which is distinctive of Japanese prints. Moreover, the subject of this scene is a tugboat pulling a vessel upriver–a quite recent innovation in French commerce. One of the hallmarks of Firmin-Girard’s style also found in this painting is his penchant for allowing forms to dissolve in a haze of light, particularly the shapes in the middle and background, which tends to flatten the picture plane according to the Japanese convention.


Private Collection, Pennsylvania, USA;

Private Collection, United Kingdom

Buy with confidence: our assurance to you

Professional Associations

We have built up a strong reputation for the quality of the paintings, drawings and sculpture that we curate, exhibit and sell. Our professional associations with bodies such as The British Antique Dealers’ Association (BADA) and the Association of Art & Antique Dealers (LAPADA) are as a result of our reputation for integrity, our wide knowledge of fine arts and the high quality of our stock. Our business standards and expertise are reviewed regularly to adhere vigorously with enforced Codes. Our memberships and commitment to its Code of Conducts, gives our buyers confidence when purchasing a work from us.


Condition reports and certificates of authenticity vary in their nature by artwork, for more information on your pieces of interest, please enquire with the gallery.

Artwork images

We take pride in the attention we give to our images of the artworks for purchase and invest in these to ensure outputs are aligned as closely as possible to the item in reality. We do not apply filters or modify images, we provide high quality images to reflect the high quality of our artworks.

Your purchase process

Payment processing – You can be assured that payments are securely processed through Worldpay’s trusted payment gateway.

The Trinity House promise to you

Shipping and packaging

Shipping and packaging requirements are assessed per piece to ensure the most suitable protection for the artwork. Trinity House will therefore call following purchase to agree the recommendations and costs.

Our After Sales services

We offer the following services which we will be happy to discuss with you following your purchase, alternatively you can enquire for more information.


We offer insurance appraisals to protect your prised artwork and help you find the right cover and policy for you.


We are able to advise on framing and have access to every type and style to suit any artistic period or room setting.


The nature of the materials involved in a painting mean that on occasion some pieces are susceptible to movement and the effects of natural ageing. We are able to provide advice on practical measures to conserve the original condition of a piece and have relationships with restorers and framers to offer you a range of services to meet your needs.


Firmin-Girard entered the Ecole des Beaux-Arts at the tender age of 16 before continuing his studies at Gleyre’s atelier. He made his debut at the Paris Salon at the age of 21 where his choice of exhibits showed him to be a talented young man, however as yet to find a defining style. He had the distinction of having three paintings accepted, but they were unusually diverse: a genre scene; a historical work; and that perennial religious subject, a Saint Sebastian. Two years later, at the Salon of 1861, his classical painting, La Mort de Priamus, won the second Prix de Rome.Following this success two years later his first major contemporary genre scene, Après le bal, was awarded a third class medal. In many ways an ambitious young artist like Firmin-Girard might have been disappointed not to receive a higher grade of medal, but the picture was purchased by Princesse Mathilde, probably the single most influential collector in Paris at the time. By that one purchase his success was assured in fashionable French society. The commissions flooded in and from his studio in the Boulevard Clichy he produced a wide variety of subjects: portraits, landscapes and still lifes but most of all his elegant scenes from contemporary life. His paintings remained popular until well into this century, for though his subjects were those of academic art of the second half of the 19th century, his bright, clear palette shows an affinity with the Impressionists. Meanwhile his distinctively short, almost stippled brush strokes produce surface textures quite unlike the smooth glossy surfaces of the diehard academics. Firmin-Girard’s popularity in America is typified by his inclusion in a book on American artists in Paris by Barbara Weinberg, where he is adopted as the epitome of the French academic style.


    Your Message

    Go to Top