Alfred Sisley 1839-1899
N04843 Les Petits Prés au Printemps (The Small Meadows in Spring) 1880
Inscribed 'Sisley' b.r.
Oil on canvas, 21 3/8 x 28 3/4 (54 x 73)
Presented to the National Gallery by a body of subscribers in memory of Roger Fry 1936; transferred 1953
Prov: Erwin Davis, New York; with Durand-Ruel, New York and Paris, 1899; with Arthur Tooth and Sons, London, 1931; the subscribers 1936
Exh: Sisley, Durand-Ruel, New York, April-May 1927 (15); Tableaux de Sisley, Durand-Ruel, Paris, February-March 1930 (51), dated 1885; Summer Exhibition, Arthur Tooth and Sons, London, August-September 1933 (6); La Flèche d'Or, Arthur Tooth and Sons, London, May-June 1935 (27), dated c.1880; Summer Exhibition, Arthur Tooth and Sons, London, August-September 1935 (30)
Lit: T. McGreevy, 'Les Petits Près au Printemps' in Studio, CXVI, 1938, p.181, repr. p.197 in colour; Martin Davies, National Gallery Catalogue of the French School (London 1946), p.87; François Daulte, Alfred Sisley (Paris 1959), No.391, p.172, repr. p.173 (dated 1880); William Gaunt, The Impressionists (London 1972), p.122, repr. pl.34 in colour
Repr: James Laver, French Painting and the Nineteenth Century (London 1937), pl.104
Sisley moved from Sèvres to Veneux-Nadon, on the outskirts of Moret-sur-Loing, in 1880 and remained there until September 1882 when he settled in Moret itself. Le Chemin des Petits Prés (the Path through the Small Meadows) is the name of a riverside path between Veneux and By. Sisley painted several other pictures at this time along this path or very close to it, including [N05144]. One called 'Les Petits Prés à By' was shown in the seventh Impressionist exhibition in March 1882.
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, pp.690-1, reproduced p.690