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Eugène Boudin, The Entrance to Trouville Harbour

Key facts
Full title The Entrance to Trouville Harbour
Artist Eugène Boudin
Artist dates 1824 - 1898
Date made 1888
Medium and support Oil on mahogany
Dimensions 32.4 × 40.9 cm
Inscription summary Signed; Dated
Acquisition credit Presented by the Art Fund, 1906
Inventory number NG2078
Location Not on display
Collection Main Collection
The Entrance to Trouville Harbour
Eugène Boudin

Boudin, who was born and grew up in the Normandy port of Honfleur and later owned a framing shop in Le Havre, had a lifelong fascination with the Channel coast. He is best known for his paintings of affluent holidaymakers on the beaches of Trouville, but this painting shows a different aspect of life in the Normandy port. Here we see the mouth of the river Touques at the point where it flows into the sea, with the two jetties either side forming the entrance to the harbour.

The tide is low, and ships are aground on the sandy banks. Boudin plays with the contrast between the river, as still and glassy as a mirror, and the lively sky with its scudding clouds. The two are separated by a narrow band of turquoise sea with a suggestion of breaking waves.

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