Skip to main content

Claude-Joseph Vernet, A Sea-Shore

Key facts
Full title A Sea-Shore
Artist Claude-Joseph Vernet
Artist dates 1714 - 1789
Date made 1776
Medium and support Oil on copper
Dimensions 62.2 × 85.1 cm
Inscription summary Signed; Dated
Acquisition credit Bequeathed by Richard Simmons, 1846
Inventory number NG201
Location Room 40
Collection Main Collection
Previous owners
A Sea-Shore
Claude-Joseph Vernet

This Italian coastal scene bathed in soft sunlight is influenced by the port scenes of Claude, though much of the effect in Vernet’s painting depends upon its picturesque human detail. Two fashionably dressed ladies have been brought down to the shore by a Hungarian hussar, who is drawing their attention either to the large ship about to enter the harbour or to the women gathering shrimps. The ladies are followed by two more modestly dressed women, one apparently comforting the other, and by a dark-skinned Moor wearing a turban. As in other paintings by Vernet, there are also many figures in the middle distance and background, and even on the three-masted ship near the horizon.

Although the painting contains a variety of figures, its main subject is the atmospheric effects of light, air, cloud and water. The harbour view is imaginary, but the lighthouse is loosely based on one that Vernet drew in Naples in about 1750.

Download image
Download low-resolution image

Download a low-resolution copy of this image for personal use.

License this image

License and download a high-resolution image for reproductions up to A3 size from the National Gallery Picture Library.

License image
Download low-resolution image

This image is licensed for non-commercial use under a Creative Commons agreement.

Examples of non-commercial use are:

  • Research, private study, or for internal circulation within an educational organisation (such as a school, college or university)
  • Non-profit publications, personal websites, blogs, and social media

The image file is 800 pixels on the longest side.

As a charity, we depend upon the generosity of individuals to ensure the collection continues to engage and inspire. Help keep us free by making a donation today.

Download low-resolution image

You must agree to the Creative Commons terms and conditions to download this image.

Creative Commons Logo