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The Beach, Étretat

Jean-Baptiste-Camille Corot, French, 1796–1875
Oil on canvas
Place depicted
Étretat, France, Europe
Current Location
On View, Gallery 206
14 in. x 22 3/16 in. (35.6 x 56.4 cm)
framed: 20 5/8 in. x 29 in. x 3 1/2 in. (52.4 x 73.7 x 8.9 cm)
Credit Line
Museum Purchase
Public Domain
Object Number
Jean-Baptiste-Camille Corot represents boats on the beach at the resort of Étretat in Normandy, France. The unusual arch rock formations, for which the location is known, are just visible in the distance. The interesting cropped form of the wooden mooring pier at right, with its strong, abstract shapes, may reflect Corot’s interest in photography. Corot painted this work during an extensive tour around France in his mid-70s when he continued to travel despite suffering from severe gout.
- 1894
Oscar Simon, Dinard, France [1]

by 1905 -
Boussod et Valadon, Paris, France [2]

- 1927
Isaac Cook, Jr. (d.1926), St. Louis, MO, USA [3]

1927 -
Max Safron, St. Louis, MO, purchased from the sale of the Cook collection [4]

- 1932
Warner S. McCall, St. Louis, MO

1932 -
Saint Louis Art Museum, purchased from Warner S. McCall [4]

[1] The 1905 catalogue raisonné on Corot indicates that this painting was with Oscar Simon until 1894 [Robaut, Alfred. "L'Oeuvre de Corot, Catalogue raisonné et illustré." Paris: H. Floury, 1905, cat. 2054]. It also credits the photograph of the painting to "Boussod" (see note [2]).

[2] Another 1905 publication which illustrates this work credits it to Boussod et Valadon [Robaut, Alfred. "Histoire de Corot et de ses Oeuvres." Paris: H. Floury, 1905, fig. 227]. It is unclear whether the art gallery Boussod et Valadon owned the work, or simply supplied the photograph for the 1905 publications (see note [1]). Boussod et Valadon was in operation until 1919.

[3] Listed in catalogue, "Sale of The Collection of the late Isaac Cook, Jr.", May 17, 1927, cat. no. 6.

[4] "Max Safron / 1150" annotated in a copy of the Isaac Cook, Jr. sale catalogue. Safron also noted as the buyer in an unidentified newspaper clipping dated May 18, 1927 [SLAM document files]. Max Safron also included an image of this painting in his archive [Archives, Richardson Memorial Library, Saint Louis Art Museum].

[4] Minutes of the Administrative Board of Control of the City Art Museum, June 9, 1932.
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