'A Landscape at Sunset' shows a port bathed in glowing evening sunshine. The mood is one of serenity, yet the painting is full of details of activities and the effects of light are rendered with breathtaking delicacy.
Vernet was renowned for pairs of paintings showing contrasting states of nature and his works were especially sought-after by British collectors in the 18th-century. This painting and its pendant, 'A Shipwreck in Stormy Seas' are now the only such pair to be found in a British public collection. The pair originally belonged to the celebrated Englishman Clive of India, who bought them from Vernet in 1773. They are acknowledged as being two of Vernet's greatest marine pictures.
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These two paintings were made as pendants, or companion pieces, and would have hung next to each other.