Bowdoin College Museum of Art, Brunswick, Maine, Bequest of Mildred Curtis Hughson, in memory of her father, William John Curtis, Class of 1875
A cabin boy on his father’s ship, the artist Eugène Boudin remained captivated by the sea throughout his adult life. Following his training as a painter in Paris, Boudin divided his time between the French capital and the coasts of Normandy and Brittany. Boudin’s practice of working en plein air, as well as his use of bright colors, loose brushwork, and his interest in light inspired the young Claude Monet, who painted side-by-side with Boudin in the late 1850s. Later Boudin exhibited with Monet and other Impressionist painters. In choosing to paint the port of Le Havre, Boudin focused his attention on a bustling point of exchange that served as an entryway into Europe for goods such as coffee, cotton, and oil and as a major hub for travelers to the United States.
View of the Le Havre harbor entrance; view across the water to the channel entrance. The painting should be compared with one of the following year from the collection of Mr. Paul Mellon, now in the National Gallery of Art, Washington, DC.
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