Lot 46
  • 46

Alfred Sisley

1,200,000 - 1,800,000 USD
bidding is closed


  • Alfred Sisley
  • La Seine au bas-Meudon
  • Signed Sisley (lower right)
  • Oil on canvas
  • 19 3/4 by 24 in.
  • 50 by 61 cm


François de Curel, Paris

Mlle de Curel, Paris (sold: Palais Galliera, Paris, June 21, 1961)

Jacques Guerlain, Paris

Sale: Palais Galliera, Paris, November 23, 1965, lot 208

Galerie Pétridès, Paris

Private Collection, Paris

Wildenstein & Co., New York

Private Collection, Canada (acquired from the above on October 15, 1968)

Thence by descent

Catalogue Note

Sisley's view of the Seine was painted in the autumn of 1878 in Meudon, a suburb to the south-west of Paris.  Painted at the height of his involvement with the original Impressionist group, the scene here possesses all of the hallmarks of a great Impressionist landscape, with the light reflecting off the water and filtering through the clouds.  Indeed, the pictures that Sisley produced at this moment are among the most revered examples of this genre.  In his monograph of the artist, Richard Shone has written, "The landscape paintings of Alfred Sisley occupy an inviolable position in the history of early Impressionism.  His depictions of the Thames at Hampton Court, the Seine in flood, the snow-bound suburbs of Paris are indispensable to an account of Impressionist landscape painting in the 1870s" (R. Shone, Sisley, New York, 1992, p. 7).

The picture was once in the collection of Mlle de Curel, the descendent of Marie-Alberto, the vicomte de Curel (1827-1908).  Among the other works in Mlle de Curel's collection was another Sisley, now in the collection of the National Gallery of Art.  The present work once belonged to Jacques Guerlain (1874-1963), whose family founded the eponymous Parisian perfume house.  Jacques was the second generation perfumer and the most successful in the house's history, creating such legendary fragrances as L'Heure bleue and Shalimar