Sisley, Alfred

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sketches of

Alfred Sisley (1839-1899)


1870, Sisley exhibited impressionism at the Salon !

In 1870 Sisley exhibited two paintings at the Paris Salon. This is four years before the first ‘impressionist’ exposition. This is when many painters are stil busy developing an impressionistic painting style. And in this early year Sisley exhibits two beautiful paintings in a fully impressionistic painting style, with bright vibrant colours ! And so the Salon, known as a conservative institute exhibiting mostly paintings with historical and mythological themes, exhibits two impressionists paintings four years before the Impressionists started their own independent expositions. Quite progressive you might say.

1870, CR16, Vue du Canal Saint-Martin, 50×65, Orsay (iR2;iR3)

1870, CR17, Péniches sur le canal Saint-Martin (Barges on the Saint-Martin Canal), 54×73, Winterthur (or: 1872, Orsay) (iR2)


Sisley only joined four times the ‘impressionist’ expositions:


Sisley, a short private biography + where did Sisley live?:

  • 1839/10/30 birth in Paris: 19 rue des Trois-Bornes, Paris >
  • His father William was a wealthy business man
  • 1857-1860/1? business study in London
  • 1862 returns to Paris (R53,p140)
  • 1864 apartment with atelier in the Avenue de Neuilly (aR1)
  • 1866 start relationship with Marie-Louise Adélaïde-Eugénie Lescouezec (1834-1898)
  • 1866 lives at 15, Rue Moncey, Paris (aR16;R53,p140)
  • 1867/06/19 birth of Pierre (who died in 1929) (aR1;R53,p140)

1864, Renoir, portrait de William Sisley, 81×65, Orsay (iR2; iR4)

1868, Renoir, Les fiancés, Alfred Sisley with His Wife, 106×74, WRM Cologne (iR2;iR3;iR4)

1868, Renoir, The Painter Alfred Sisley, 65×81, Bührle Zurich (iR2;iR4)
  • 1868: marries Marie Lescouezec (R53,p140)
  • ?1868/69 moves to Bougival >
  • 1868, April lives for a short time in Chailly-en-Bière > (in the forest of Fontainebleau);
    spends time with Renoir
    rue de Moncey, Paris? (aR1)
  • 1868/05/01 lives at 19, Rue de la Paix > (=Rue La Condamine) (aR16)
    Blondel writes he moved at the end of 1868 (aR1)
  • 1869 Avenue de Clichy, Batignolles, Paris > (aR1)
    had here also an atelier
  • 1869 birth of Jeanne
    she later marries Diets (or Dietsh); became a painter; died 4/2/1919
    (note: Gale mentions she was born in 1866 and was there first child (R53,p140)
  • 1870/05/01 lives at 27, Cité des Fleurs, Paris (aR16)
  • 1870-71 Franco-Prussian War
  • his father William gets ill and later dies (aR1); his business is ruined; stop allowance of his father; start of poverty wich remains until his death
  • 1870, End moves to 2, Rue de la Princesse, Louveciennes >
    close to Renoir’s parents (aR1)
  • 1871, March takes refuge in Rue de Voisins in Louveciennes >
    many of his pictures in his atelier in Bougival have been destroyed (aR1)
  • 1871 birth of Jacques, who died the same year (aR2)

1874, CR19, The Lesson, 41×47, private (iR2)

Renoir, 1875, Jeanne Sisley, 37×28, private (iR2)

Renoir, 1876, Alfred Sisley, 66×55 Chicago AI (iR6; iR2)
  • 1874/04/15 lives at 2, Rue de la Princesse, Voisins-Louveciennes (R2,p123; aR16)
  • 1875-78 lives in Voisins (part of Louveciennes) near  Marly-le-Roi >
    close to ‘l’Abreuvoir’ (the watering place) (aR1)
  • 1876/04/01 lives in Marly-le-Roi (R2,p165)
  • 1877/04/01 lives in Marly-le-Roi (R2,p207)
  • 1878, Marz moves to Sèvres
    1877-79 lives in Sèvres (south-west of Paris, direction Versailles) (aR1)
    1877, 7, Avenue de Bellevue > (uncertain)
    March 1879, 164, Grand-Rue, Sèvres >
  • receives support by the art-collectors Murer, Charpentier and Duret (R3;R53,p141)
    1887 Murer owns 28 works of Sisley (aR1)
  • 1879 moves near to Moret-sur-Loing (aR1)
  • 1880-82 lives in Veneux-Nadon > (nowadays: Veneux-les-Sablons; R3, aR1;R53,p141)
  • 1882/03/01 lives in Moret (Seine et Marne) (R2,p394; aR16)
  • 1882, September – 1883/10/01 lives in Moret-sur-Loing > (R7, aR1)
  • 1883,August-1889 Veneux-les-Sablons > (aR6, R7;R53,p141)
  • 1889 moves to Moret-sur-Loing >
  • 1892, April moves to 19 rue Montmartre, Moret-sur-Loing >
  • 1894, moves to another house in Moret (R53,p142)
  • 1897/08/05 Sisley and Lescouezec are officially married in Cardiff >
  • 1897 attempt to be naturalized as a French-man wich fails
  • 1898/10/08 his wife dies
  • 1899/01/29 dies of throat cancer in Moret-sur-Loing >
  • 1899/02/01 funeral; Monet and Renoir are present

Marie Bracquemond, 1877, Le couple Sisley dînant chez les Bracquemond à Sèvres, (Sous la lampe), xx, Chicago AI (iR4)

1892, Sisley’s Home in Moret , 54×73, private (iR2)

Sisley, general private info


Sisley, short chronology as a painter:

  • 1862, October start study at the École des Beaux-Arts and the atelier of Gleyre
  • start friendship with Monet, Bazille and Renoir
  • 1863, Spring: leaves atelier Gleyre (aR1)
    1864 Gleyre ceases teaching; Sisley leaves the atelier (aR5)
  • 1863-66  paints in Fontainebleau >
  • 1866 debut at the Salon (R3;R53,p140)
    again in 1868, 1870;
    rejected in 1867, 1869, 1878, 1879
  • 1867 paints with Monet (and Bazille and Boudin?, aR1) in Honfleur > (south of Le Havre) (R16)
  • 1972, January meets Durand-Ruel (aR1)
    in the next 25 years he will buy almost 400 of his works
    except in the years 1877-1880 when he was himself in financial problems
  • 1872, Spring visits Monet in Argenteuil >
  • 1874 joins the first ‘impressionist’ exposition
    also will participate in 1876, 1877 and 1882
  • 1874, Summer: paints in London and Molessey >
    Faure buys 5 of his pictures made in this period (aR1)
  • 1875/03/24 + 05/28 auction in hotel Drouot (with Renoir, Monet and Morisot); no succes (aR1)
    24/3 sells 21 paintings for 2455 francs (aR1)
  • 1876 painted a series of 6 paintings of the flooding in Port-Marly (R16)
  • 1881 solo exposition in ‘La Vie Moderne’ with 14 works
  • 1883 solo exposition in the gallery of Durand-Ruel; no succes
  • 1889 solo exposition in the New York gallery of Durand-Ruel
  • 1893-94 series of 14 works (12 in CR) of the church of Moret-sur-Loing > aR1
    25, Rue de N >
    actual photo of the Notre-Dame de la Nativité
  • 1896 retrospective exposition by Georges Petit with 52 works
  • 1897, Summer paints in Wales

1891, Moret-sur-Loing – the Porte de Bourgogne, 65×92, private (iR2)

1896, CR857, Cabins by the River Loing, Morning, 60×73, private (iR2)

1897, Storr’s Rock in Lady’s Cove – Evening, 66×82, AC Cardiff (iR2)


Sisley, general info as a painter:

  • 1899 shortly after his death he becomes recognized as a great painter
  • Sisley produced about 960 oil paintings, 100 pastels and many drawings
  • Sisley was a true landscapist; he rarely painted portraits, interieurs or still lives (9x; aR1)


Sisley, within the impressionist circles:


Was Sisley an Impressionist?

Sisley painted mostly ‘en-plein-air’ and tried to render the influence of the time of day, the seasons and weather conditions on the landscapes he painted. In this sense he was one of the most consistent Impressionists. But why did he only participate actively in the first three ‘impressionist’ expositions?

1894, CR823, Le sentier au bord de l’eau à Sahurs, le soir (detail), 61×100, MBA Rouen, BVC18

1891, Chemin montant au soleil (detail), 61×50, MBA Rouen, BVC18

1894, La Seine à la Bouille, coup de vent (detail), 81×100, MBA Rouen, BVC18



Sisley, additional References =aR: 

(For the general references (=R) see. For the general references to internet pages (=iR) see. For the subscriptions of the paintings see.)

  1. Blondel, Francois, Sisley, VisiMuZ, 2016, e-book,
    including: Théodore Duret: Les Peintres impressionnistes: Claude Monet, Sisley, C. Pissarro, Renoir, B. Morisot, 1878; latest revised version in 1922 (=TD) and Gustave Geffroy, 1927 (GG)
    (for an extensive free preview see)
  2. (=iR4)
  3. (=iR3)
  4. (=iR27)
  5. > 
  6. (about Les Sablons)
  7. / Sisley (=iR2; my most used source; >700 works !)
  8. YouTube / Sisley (>400 works)
  9. / Sisley (=iR7; >450 works)
  10. / Sisley (=iR13; >750 works; dysfunctional loading; also drawings and pastels; with auction info)
  11. / Sisley (=iR6; also drawings and pastels; several divisions)
  12. Google Art Project / Sisley (=iR8; option of moving in on details)
  13. / Sisley (=iR38; with many links to musea)
  14. (796 works in alphabetical order; irritating pop-ups)
  15. / Sisley (=iR28; 378 works)
  16. Salon database of Musée d’Orsay