A painter of marine scenes and skies, Eugène Boudin tasked himself with incarnating one particular location: the Normandy seaside, around Deauville and Trouville. A tireless spectator of life on the beach at the end of the 19th century, Boudin preferred to depict the great outdoors in his painting. He took part in the first exhibition of impressionist works in 1874, in the studio of Félix Nadar. Close to Johan Barthold Jongkind and Claude Monet, whom he also encouraged to study on the motif, Boudin depicts through his works the animation that brings small coastal ports to life. He tasked himself with observing atmospheric variations and the development of the light as seasons changed, but also the sailboats heading out to sea and everyday life on the beach. “Deauville, the Basin” is part of a series created by Boudin in the 1880s, around the basins of Deauville, Fécamp, Honfleur and Trouville. In this work, he plays on the contrast between the imposing mast of the sailboat in the port and the vast expanse of sky. The view is at water-level. The perspective is structured by large, horizontal and vertical lines. A piercing ray of light to the left creates an extraordinary effect as it illuminates the scene, brought to life by small, rapid brush strokes.

Cyrille Sciama


  • Title: Deauville, the Basin
  • Creator: Eugène Boudin
  • Date Created: 1884
  • Location: Giverny, musée des impressionnismes, acquired thanks to the generosity of the Cercle des Mécènes du musée des impressionnismes Giverny, the Caisse d’Épargne Normandie, and Quadra Consultants in 2020, MDIG 2020.1.1
  • Physical Dimensions: 18 x 12 inches (46.5 x 38 cm)
  • Rights: © Giverny, musée des impressionnismes / photo: Jean-Charles Louiset
  • Medium: Oil on panel

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