In the foreground is a view of the sea from a sandy shore with a few ships in the distance.

The horizon is low and the sky fills three-quarters of the picture surface. This painting may be dated to the years I865-6 when Courbet painted many paysages de mer at Trouville and became particularly fashionable, both for portraits and for sea studies. It may conceivably be identified with one of the twenty-five seascapes at Trouville mentioned in a letter by Courbet to Castagnary, dated 5 July, I869, as having proved a financial loss to him through the bankruptcy of his dealer Delaroche.


E.l.T.Mesens; Sir Alfred Chester Beatty; On loan to the National Gallery since 1955.

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