Trouville, Scène de plage

by Eugène Boudin

P.O.A.

The painting shows groups of holiday makers taking the air at the beach. Eugene Boudin worked a great deal on the Normandy coast, especially at the fashionable resorts of Trouville and Deauville.  Eugène dedicated himself entirely to observing a new fashion, beach tourism on the Normandy coast. The French side of the channel coastline, initially frequented in the first half of the 19th century for its health-giving qualities, after 1850 became the resort of the French and English high society. Always painting in the open air, Boudin caught moments as they happened, revealing a society of crinolines and frock coats, with the Normandy beaches as glittering as any Paris salon.

DIMENSIONS: (unframed) 7.24 x 12.87 in./18.40 x 32.70 cm
SIGNATURE: Inscribed ‘Trouville’
MEDIUM:
Oil on panel

 

Catalogue No: 5389 Categories: ,

Boudin was largely self-taught and showed a preference for working directly from nature. The majority of his paintings are small landscapes of the harbours and beaches of the coast of northern France (as in this example which is set on the beach at Trouville). In about 1856 Boudin met Claude-Oscar Monet and introduced him to outdoor painting. The two worked together in the later 1860s.

M. Sonnerville, Bordeaux (acquired directly from the artist)
William Hallsborough Ltd., London
Lock Galleries, New York (acquired by 1967)
The Armand Hammer Foundation, Los Angeles (stock no. AHC 80,018, cat no. 48, acquired by 1968)
Private collection, California
Montgomery Gallery, San Francisco
Private collection, Canada (acquired from the above in 2012)

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New York, Hammer Galleries, 40th Anniversary Loan Exhibition 1928-1968, Masterworks of the XIXth and XXth Century,
1968, p. 12 (titled La plage à Trouville, dated c.1882, illustrated)
Memphis, Brooks Memorial Art Gallery, 1969, no. 28 (illustrated); Washington, D.C., Smithsonian Institution, 1970, no.
29 (titled Beach at Trouville (La plage à Trouville), dated c.1882, incorrect medium, illustrated); Kansas City, William Rockhill
Nelson Gallery of Art, 1970; New Orleans, Isaac Delgado Museum of Art, 1970; Columbus, Columbus Gallery of Fine
Arts, 1970; Little Rock, Arkansas Art Center, 1971; San Francisco, California Palace of the Legion of Honor, 1971;
Oklahoma City, Oklahoma Art Center, 1971; San Diego, Fine Arts Gallery of San Diego, 1971; Los Angeles, Los Angeles
County Museum of Art, 1971-72, no. 16 (titled Beach at Trouville, incorrect medium); London, Royal Academy of Arts,
1972, no. 16; Dublin, The National Gallery of Ireland, 1972; Leningrad, The Hermitage Museum, 1972; Moscow, The
Pushkin Museum, 1972-73; Kiev, State Museum of Fine Art of the Ukraine Soviet Socialist Republic, 1973; Minsk, State
Fine Art Museum, 1973; Riga, State Museum of Foreign Fine Arts, 1973; Odessa, Fine Arts Museum, 1973; Caracas, Fine
Arts Museum, 1975; Lima, Italian Art Museum, 1975; Tokyo, Ikebukuro-Seibu Museum, 1975; Kyoto, Japan, 1975;
Fukuoka, Fukuoka Prefectural Culture Center Museum, 1976; Nagoya, Aichi Prefectural Museum, 1976; Nashville,
Tennessee Fine Arts Center at Cheekwood, 1976; Mexico City, Palace of Fine Arts, 1977; Paris, Jacquemart-André
Museum, 1977; Malibu, The J. Paul Getty Museum, 1977; Atlanta, The High Museum of Art, 1977-78; Denver, The Denver
Art Museum, 1978 (stock no. SE.1978.3.16, titled Beach at Trouville); New York, Albright-Knox Gallery, 1978; Edinburgh,
The National Gallery of Scotland and the Royal Scottish Academy, 1978; Oslo, National Gallery of Norway, 1978-79;
Stockholm, Nationalmuseum, 1979; Houston, The Museum of Fine Arts, 1979-80; Los Angeles, Los Angeles County
Museum of Art, 1980; Washington D.C., Corcoran Gallery and School of Art, 1980; Palm Beach, Norton Gallery and
School of Art, 1981; Cincinatti, Cincinatti Art Museum, 1981; Lexington, University of Kentucky Art Museum, 1981-82;
Beijing, China Art Gallery, 1982; Huntington, Huntington Galleries, 1982; Los Angeles, Los Angeles County Museum of
Art, 1983; Hungary, The Fine Arts Museum of Hungary, 1983; Belgrade, National Museum of Belgrade, 1983; Prague,
Nationals Gallery of Art, 1983-84; Tulsa, Philbrook Art Center, 1984; Los Angeles, Los Angeles Country Museum of Art,
1984; Jerusalem, The Israel Museum, 1984; Albuquerque, The Albuquerque Museum, 1985; Birmingham, Birmingham
Museum of Art, 1985; Palm Beach, The Norton Gallery and School of Art, 1985; Palm Springs, Palm Springs Desert
Museum, 1986; Leningrad, The Hermitage Museum, 1986; Moscow, State Art Gallery, 1986; Novosibirsk, Regional Picture
Gallery, 1986; Odessa, Odessa Fine Art Museum, 1986; Kiev, Kiev State Museum of Ukraine Fine Art, 1986; Tbilisi, State
Museum of Art of the Georgian SSR, 1986-87; Louisville, JB Speed Art Museum, 1987; Holyoke, The Heritage State Park,
1987, The Armand Hammer Collection: Five Centuries of Masterpieces, 1969-87

Eugène Louis Boudin (French 12 July 1824 – 8 August 1898) was one of the first French landscape painters to paint outdoors. Born at Honfleur, Boudin was the son of a harbour pilot, and at age ten the young boy worked on a steamboat that ran between Le Havre and Honfleur. In 1835 the family moved to Le Havre, where Boudin’s father opened a store for stationery and picture frames. Here the young Eugene worked, later opening his own small shop. 

In his shop, in which pictures were framed, Boudin came into contact with artists working in the area and exhibited in the shop the paintings of Constant Troyon and Jean-François Millet, who, along with Jean-Baptiste Isabey and Thomas Couture whom he met during this time, encouraged young Boudin to follow an artistic career. At the age of twenty-two he abandoned the world of commerce, started painting full-time, and travelled to Paris the following year and then through Flanders. In 1850 he earned a scholarship that enabled him to move to Paris, although he often returned to paint in Normandy and, from 1855, made regular trips to Brittany.

Dutch 17th-century masters profoundly influenced him, and on meeting the Dutch painter Johan Jongkind, who had already made his mark in French artistic circles, Boudin was advised by his new friend to paint outdoors (en plein air). He also worked with Troyon and Isabey, and in 1859 met Gustave Courbet who introduced him to Charles Baudelaire, the first critic to draw Boudin’s talents to public attention when the artist made his debut at the 1859 Paris Salon.

In 1857/58 Boudin befriended the young Claude Monet, then only eighteen, and persuaded him to give up his teenage caricature drawings and to become a landscape painter, helping to instill in him a love of bright hues and the play of light on water later evident in Monet’s Impressionist paintings. The two remained lifelong friends and Monet later paid tribute to Boudin’s early influence. Boudin joined Monet and his young friends in the first Impressionist exhibition in 1873, but never considered himself a radical or innovator. 

He visited Belgium, the Netherlands and southern France, and from 1892 to 1895 made regular trips to Venice. He continued to exhibit at the Paris Salons, receiving a third place medal at the Paris Salon of 1881, and a gold medal at the 1889 Exposition Universelle. In 1892 Boudin was made a knight of the Légion d’honneur. 

The Eugène Boudin Prize is an award given by the Société Nationale des Beaux-Arts. Among the laureates of this award, the following painters were nominated:

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