In this panoramic view of the Seine River valley near the town of St.-Germain-en-Laye, Sisley captures the atmosphere and light conditions associated with early spring. On the heights in the distance, he includes the old château that housed the French royal court until 1682, but he also inserts some notes of modernity, including the steam tugs hauling barges on the river and the railroad bridge. Sisley was born in France of English parents. While enrolled in Charles Gleyre's studio in Paris, he and his fellow students, Claude Monet, Auguste Renoir, and Frédéric Bazille, began to paint outdoors in the Fontainebleau forest. In 1874, he showed five paintings in the first Impressionist exhibition. Of all the Impressionists, he and Monet would remain the most consistent landscape painters.