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Wilson Steer was trained in France in the 1880s and 1890s, and he experimented with a range of Impressionist techniques. He exhibited his work at the Paris Salon, but in London his Impressionist pictures were greeted with vicious howls of critical scorn. This picture was begun at Cowes on the Isle of Wight. The bright dashes of colour were inspired by the work of the French 'Divisionist' artists, Seurat and Pissarro, who made similar paintings of yachts in profile. Later Steer turned away from his French heroes and started to paint in the manner of Turner and Constable.

August 2004