Boulevar des Capucines


61x80, oil on canvas


At the First Exhibition of Impressionists in 1874 this canvas was one of several that aroused the indignation of spectators and critics. The famous Paris boule­vard is seen from the window of Nadar's photographic studio where the exhibi­tion was held. Like a photographic shot the picture includes only part of the boulevard, cutting off the figures of the men on the balcony. The sharp angle in the composition creates the impression of a momentary glance taking in the whole street. The artist is painting the "elemental fleeting nature of street life". The small free brushstrokes suggest the movement of the air, the slight haze through which the sun is shining, while the rhythm conveys the motion of the passers-by.