Bord de Mer
Bord de Mer
Bord de Mer
Bord de Mer

CLAUDE MONET (1840-1926)

Bord de Mer

c. 1865 France

Offered by M. S. Rau Antiques

US$785,000 usd
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"It is beautiful here [in Le Havre], my friend; every day I discover even more beautiful things. It is intoxicating me, and I want to paint it all - my head is bursting... It seems to me as if I can see nature and I can catch it all."
- Claude Monet in a letter to his friend Frédéric Bazille, 1864

Offering considerable insight into the development of this Impressionist master’s oeuvre, Bord de Mer is an extraordinary example of the early work of Claude Monet. Heralded today as one of the world’s most legendary artists, Monet's entrancing works reveal his lifelong obsession with light and atmosphere. This stunning composition is no exception. With its soft palette and exquisite light, the stunning pastel portends Monet’s revolutionary Impressionist seascape, Impression, Sunrise, a work that is largely considered his first masterpiece. A similar early pastel recently achieved a new record for a work on paper by the artist, bring $2,183,700 at Christie's in February 2018.

Among the first works, he composed en plein air in Normandy, Bord de Mer is a significant precursor to the spontaneity and impressionistic verve of Monet’s later oil paintings. His early paintings from this period reveal the influences of the great French Barbizon and landscape painters, particularly those he encountered during his days in Le Havre. Eugene Boudin, in particular, encouraged the young Monet to set up his easel outdoors in order to best capture the world around him, and Monet's early style came to emulate the natural and vibrant light of his first teacher.

The compelling pastel also presents a rare medium for the artist, one which allowed him to fully explore the rich colors and varied textures of the Normandy coast. Versatile in use and easy to transport, pastels offered the budding young artist the rapidity and freedom he craved during his first foray into painting en plein air. Many of Monet's early works were composed in and around Le Havre, and these pieces reveal the painter's budding fascination with the tumultuous sea, the ever-changing weather, and the ephemeral quality of light.

One of the most admired and recognized artists of all time, Monet was a dedicated student of nature, and he remained a naturalist his entire life. He held a profound fascination with perspective and the play of movement and natural light, using these elements to compose landscapes of peerless splendor. His genius in recreating natural phenomena on canvas is evident even in this important early pastel, which stands as a significant precursor to his later Series paintings.

Born in Paris in 1840, Claude Monet was a leading figure of the Impressionist movement. Edgar Degas, Pierre-Auguste Renoir, Camille Pissarro and Berthe Morisot were counted among his colleagues, and his works stood beside theirs at the first Impressionist exhibition of 1874. Today, Monet’s works are represented in the finest museums around the globe, including the National Gallery (London), the Musée D’Orsay (Paris), the Metropolitan Museum of Art (New York), the Louvre (Paris), The Hermitage (St. Petersburg), and many others.

This important work is illustrated on page 145 of Courbet et l'impressionnisme, Musée Courbet, 2016, by F. Thomas-Maurin, J. Delmas, and E. Bourdon, number 26. It will also be included in the supplement of the Catalogue Critique de l'oeuvre de Claude Monet being prepared by G. Wildenstein and has been authenticated by the Wildenstein Institute.
Théodore Duret
Louis Leroy, Paris
Madame Rosenberg Collection, France (before 1953)
Galerie Rousso (1953)
Georges Albertini, the former owner's uncle
Danielle Meurgey and Patrick Bouyer (1968)
Private collection, Paris
M.S. Rau Antiques, New Orleans
Courbet et l'impressionnisme, Musée Gustave Courbet, Ornans, July 9 - October 17, 2016
Height 7.00 inch (17.78 cm)
Width 11.00 inch (27.94 cm)
External Height 18.38 inch (46.69 cm)
External Width 22.38 inch (56.85 cm)
Stock Code
Pastel on paper
Signed “C. Monet” (lower right)
M. S. Rau Antiques

M. S. Rau Antiques
630 Royal Street
New Orleans
United States

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