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John Leslie Breck (American, 1860-1899) The River Epte, Giverny

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American & European Works of Art - 2655B
Date / Time :
May 17, 2013 12:00PM


John Leslie Breck (American, 1860-1899)

The River Epte, Giverny, c. 1887
Signed "Breck" l.r., identified on a label from Vose Galleries of Boston on the fra
Oil on canvas, 18 1/8 x 22 in. (46.2 x 55.9 cm), framed.
Condition: Craquelure, mild surface grime.

N.B. In the late 1880s, John Leslie Breck was drawn to Giverny and the Impressionism of Claude Monet. Along with Theodore Robinson, Theodore Wendel, and Blair Bruce, Breck was among the earliest American artists to settle in the picturesque village along the Seine. Breck entered Monet's inner circle, and became an exponent of the "new painting." His close association with Monet can be seen in pictures Breck completed of Monet's houseboat and garden, which were shown in Breck's first one-man show in Boston at the St. Botolph Club in 1890. (1) Breck returned permanently to Boston in 1890 and continued to paint in this avant-garde style. His Impressionist canvases provoked lively response in Boston and New York. Breck's premature death in 1899 elicited a memorial exhibition at the St. Botolph Club, at which time the leadership and direction of the Boston school had been assumed by Edmund Tarbell.

The quiet River Epte with its tree-lined banks was a favorite Giverny locale for painters. It was recorded many times by Monet; one well-known version, Bend in the River Epte, 1888, is in the collection of the Philadelphia Museum of Art.

1. Biography, AskArt,

Estimate $100,000-150,000

With a canvas stencil from Paul Foinet, Paris, on the reverse.

Inscribed in pencil on the stretcher "Quincy Shaw" on the right side, and incised on the top stretcher bar with an overlapping "V W" monogram and with the numbers 19, 16, and 11 added in ink around the monogram to the left, right, and bottom respectively.

In a 22/23 karat gold frame by Guido, Boston.

Naturally occurring pigment fluorescence, no additional condition issues to report.

The absence of a condition statement does not imply that the lot is in perfect condition or completely free from wear and tear, imperfections or the effects of aging. Condition requests can be obtained via email (lot inquiry button) or by telephone to the appropriate gallery location (Boston/617.350.5400 or Marlborough/508.970.3000). Any condition statement given, as a courtesy to a client, is only an opinion and should not be treated as a statement of fact. Skinner Inc. shall have no responsibility for any error or omission.


John Leslie Breck, Claude Monet, Theodore Robinson, Theodore Wendel, Blair Bruce, St. Botolph Club, River Epte, Edmund Tarbell, Philadelphia Museum of Art,, Paris, Paul Foinet, Breck's, Departments of France, Epte, France, Geography of France, Giverny, Landscape artists