Lot 19
  • 19

Raoul Dufy

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  • Raoul Dufy
  • 14 Juillet au Havre
  • Signed Raoul Dufy (lower right)
  • Oil on canvas
  • 25 5/8 by 21 1/4 in.
  • 65 by 54 cm


Private Collection, Switzerland
Galerie Cazeau-Béraudière, Paris (acquired from the above)
Acquired from the above by the present owner


West Palm Beach, Norton Museum of Art; Memphis, The Dixon Gallery and Gardens; New Orleans Museum of Art;  San Antonio, The Marions Koogler McNay Art Museum, Raoul Dufy: Last of the Fauves, 1999-2000, no. 21

Catalogue Note

Raoul Dufy, like many of the painters that were to become part of the Fauvist school, enrolled in the Ecole de Beaux-Arts in Le Havre in 1892 and studied under Courchet who encouraged an atmospheric but conservative version of Impressionism.  It was in Le Havre, in the Normandy region of France, some fourteen years later that Dufy would paint 14 Juillet au Harvre.  

In 1899, Dufy was released from military service and moved to Paris with his friend and fellow painter, Othon Friesz, and over the next few years, he evolved a generalized style of softly-applied brushwork closely akin to Impressionism. The turning point in Dufy’s career came at the Salon d’Automne in 1905, where the brilliantly-colored and violently expressive paintings of Matisse, Derain and Vlaminck inspired him to take a leap past Impressionism.  Within the early Fauve movement, however, difference could still be discerned.  As Alvin Martin and Judi Freeman have written, “What distinguished the work of the Fauves from Le Havre (Dufy, Friesz and Braque) from that of Matisse and company was the treatment of surface and color.  Whereas the Norman artists have been steadfastly loyal to the Impressionist approach to painting, Matisse,  Derain, Vlaminck and the others borrowed extensively from the far more audacious generation that succeeded the Impressionists. The Norman Fauves found irresistible the full-blown Fauve manner of painting, characterized by highly saturated color and the laying in of brilliant tones side by side, and they inevitably responded to it in their own work, produced back in their native Normandy…


“Dufy championed the Fauve cause most assiduously of the three artists (Dufy, Friesz and Braque), while continuing top paint his familiar motifs.  His paintings of 1905—06 seem to be invigorated with color, no doubt the product of having experienced the sensational Fauve salon… Dufy’s festive views of local flag-draped streets, festooned for patriotic holidays, provided an especially good opportunity to use saturated color” (Alvin Martin and Judi Freeman, “The Distant Cousins in Normandy: Braque, Dufy and Friesz,” The Fauve Landscape, New York, 1990, p. 221-22).


With respect to the specific subject of the present work, Freeman wrote that Dufy, “shared the Impressionist enthusiasm for the annual transformation of cities and towns for Bastille Day on July 14 and other flag-waving celebrations.  Where as Manet and Monet occasionally painted Parisian boulevards adorned with flags for patriotic holidays, Dufy and Marquet regularly depicted the festivities.  For the Impressionist the flag-draped streets provided an opportunity to show a colorful festival of modern life, occasionally tinged with political overtones.  For Dufy and Marquet the holiday provided motifs that could be situated within the Impressionist tradition but more loosely rendered, with the sketchier brushwork and scattered, almost random color” (op. cit., p. 39).