Lot 108
  • 108

GUSTAVE CAILLEBOTTE | La Seine à l'Île Marante par temps brumeux

500,000 - 700,000 USD
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  • Gustave Caillebotte
  • La Seine à l'Île Marante par temps brumeux
  • Signed G. Caillebotte and dated 1891 (lower right)
  • Oil on canvas
  • 25 5/8 by 21 3/8 in.
  • 65 by 54.3 cm
  • Painted in 1891.


Estate of the artist
Private Collection, France (by descent from the above and sold: Briest, Paris, June 20, 1995, lot 4)
Simon Dickinson Fine Art, Inc., New York
Acquired from the above on February 20, 1999


Paris, Salon d'automne, Rétrospective Gustave Caillebotte, 1921, no. 2703
Paris, Galerie Beaux-Arts, Rétrospective Gustave Caillebotte, 1951, no. 79


Marie Berhaut, La Vie et l’oeuvre de Gustave Caillebotte, Paris, 1951, no. 285, illustrated n.p.
Marie Berhaut, Gustave Caillebotte, Sa vie et son oeuvre, Catalogue raisonné des peintures et pastels, Paris, 1978, no. 404, illustrated p. 217
Marie Berhaut, Gustave Caillebotte, Catalogue raisonné des peintures et pastels, Paris, 1994, no. 425, illustrated p. 229


The canvas is not lined. The surface is richly textured and the impasto is well-preserved. There are scattered lines of craquelure to the areas with the thickest impasto and to the pale blue pigments of the water. There is some very minor pigment shrinkage to the dark green shrub at left. There is a slight undulation in the upper right corner. There is a three-inch horizontal scratch about one inch above the lower edge, likely due to prior frame abrasion. There are minor losses to the lower left and upper right corners, likely due to prior frame abrasion as well. Under UV inspection, there are minor nailhead sized strokes of inpainting in the upper left and upper right corners. There are horizontal strokes of inpainting about one inch from the top edge, likely to address prior frame abrasion. The work is in good condition.
In response to your inquiry, we are pleased to provide you with a general report of the condition of the property described above. Since we are not professional conservators or restorers, we urge you to consult with a restorer or conservator of your choice who will be better able to provide a detailed, professional report. Prospective buyers should inspect each lot to satisfy themselves as to condition and must understand that any statement made by Sotheby's is merely a subjective qualified opinion.

Catalogue Note

This lush landscape depicts a view of the river Seine at Argenteuil, only a short walk from Caillebotte’s residence in Petit Grennevilliers. Caillebotte had moved permanently to his property on the Left Bank of the Seine at Petit Gennevilliers in May 1881, where he lived full-time with his brother Martial from 1887 until his death in 1894. The beautiful rural region unspoilt by modern development had a pastoral charm that provided Caillebotte, as well as Monet and Renoir before him, a constant source of inspiration for paintings. Monet famously painted several scenes in this area from his bateau-atelier and along the verdant banks of the river in the 1870s before moving with his family in 1881. That same year, Caillebotte and his brother purchased their house, and for the next decade scenes of Argenteuil would become the primary subject of his output (see fig. 1). 

Caillebotte had established himself as a member of the original Impressionist group in 1876, when he was asked to participate in the Second Impressionist Exhibition in Paris. Unlike most of his colleagues, Caillebotte was independently wealthy and did not trouble himself with painting for the tastes of the public as Renoir and Monet had done during the 1880s. His choice of subjects was mostly based on his own interests, such as gardening, boating or the contemplation of picturesque towns where he spent his summer holidays.

A year after he painted the present work, Caillebotte returned to nearly the exact same spot to complete his celebrated La Seine à Argenteuil, now at the Clark Art Institute in Williamstown, Massachusetts (see fig. 2). These two images reveal Caillebotte's interest in depicting the same location under differing weather conditions, just as Sisley and Monet had done.

When Caillebotte painted this picture in 1891, the Impressionists had long had their final exhibition in Paris. Other members had become embroiled in heated internal politics and Caillebotte retreated into his own independent practice. This charming picture channels the joy and freedom of those years he spent painting on his own. At the time of his death in 1894, most of Caillebotte's oil paintings remained in his private collection.

The authenticity of this work has been confirmed by the Comité Caillebotte.