Alfred Sisley 1839-1899
N04249 Le Pont de Sévres (The Bridge at Sévres) 1877
Inscribed 'Sisley' b.r.
Oil on canvas, 15 x 18 1/8 (38 x 46)
Purchased at the Murray sale (Clarke Fund) 1927
Prov: Adolphe Tavernier, Paris; Tavernier sale, Petit, Paris, 6 March 1900, lot 79; bt. Durand-Ruel on behalf of P. Van de Velde, Le Havre, 4,700 frs.; Sir James Murray, London and Aberdeen; Murray sale, Christie's, London, 29 April 1927, lot 92 repr.
Exh: Masterpieces of French Art of the 19th Century, Agnew, London, July 1923 (36), lent by Sir James Murray; Agnew, Manchester, October 1923 (36); Opening Exhibition of the Modern Foreign Gallery, Tate Gallery, June-October 1926 (works not numbered)
Lit: François Daulte, Alfred Sisley (Paris 1959), No.320, p.148, repr. p.149 (dated 1879)
Repr: John Rothenstein, Modern Foreign Pictures in the Tate Gallery (London 1947), pl.48
While Sisley was living at Sèvres, on the outskirts of Paris, from the autumn of 1877 to 1880, he painted ten pictures of the bridge, all from different viewpoints (Daulte Nos.259-64, 270, 309-10 and 320). Five are signed and dated 1877, No.310, which is rather different, is dated 1879, and the others are undated. Daulte dates the present work 1879, without giving any reasons, but it seems much more likely to have been painted in 1877 at the same time as Nos.259-64 and 270, which it closely resembles in style.
It is painted looking south, with the first houses of Billancourt on the left and Sèvres on the right.
Ronald Alley, Catalogue of the Tate Gallery's Collection of Modern Art other than Works by British Artists, Tate Gallery and Sotheby Parke-Bernet, London 1981, p.690, reproduced p.690