Road Along the Seine at Saint-Mammes


Alfred Sisley ( British, 1839 - 1899 )

c. 1880
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General Description

Instead of following the more traditional horizontal landscape format, here Alfred Sisley utilizes an unusual vertical canvas for his scene of the Parisian suburb of Saint-Mammès. This verticality is emphasized by the sharp, symmetric division of space. The right half of the painting is densely filled with the dark foliage of poplar trees and a long row of buildings lining a street filled with strolling pedestrians. In contrast, the left side features open space, with the cloud-flecked sky mirrored in the rippling Seine River. Sisley, like many of the other impressionists, sought to represent the transient qualities of light and chose to paint en plein air, or out of doors, in an attempt to capture the atmosphere of nature.

Excerpt from

Heather MacDonald, DMA label copy, 2015.

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