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The Cliff at Penarth, Evening, Low Tide

SISLEY, Alfred (1839 - 1899)

The Cliff at Penarth, Evening, Low Tide

Date: 1897

Media: oil on canvas

Size: 54.4 x 65.7 cm

Acquired: 1993; Purchase; with assistance of the Art Fund

Accession Number: NMW A 2695

Sisley visited South Wales and married his long-term partner, Eugénie Lescouezec, in Cardiff in the summer of 1897. He painted 20 views of Penarth (where he stayed from 5 July to 15 August) and Langland Bay near Swansea. He was fascinated with the unique geological structure of the cliffs at Penarth and the spectacular tidal fall of the Bristol Channel. This view was painted from the start of the clifftop walk linking Penarth and Lavernock, looking southwards, with the island of Steep Holm at the left. It is an evening with the light raking sharply from the West, casting a mauvish shadow from the steep cliff over the beach below. This painting formerly belonged to Edmond Decap, the brother-in-law of Sisley's patron François Depeaux, who had business interests in Cardiff. The practical difficulties were recognised by the artist when he wrote of painting 'against the wind, which reigns supreme here. I had not experienced this before'.


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