Such was Boudin’s reputation later in life and his acceptability to the establishment, that the year the present work was painted he received the Legion of Honor at the request of Leon Bourgeois, the Minister of Public Education. Only a few decades earlier however, seascapes had been considered a lesser genre, but Boudin who had trained in Le Havre was aware of a growing demand among collectors and devoted much of his life to marine views. Having achieved a degree of financial stability by the mid-1880s, Boudin allowed himself more freedom. Claude Monet famously remarked that Boudin’s work was sufficiently influential to decide the entire future and development of his painting, and the fluent brushwork of the present view of Saint-Valéry-sur-Somme is testament to Boudin’s status as the forerunner of Impressionism.

Eugène Boudin, FÉCAMP, LE BASSIN, 1892, oil on canvas, sold: Sotheby’s, New York, May 17, 2017, lot 191