The Pont Neuf

Johan Barthold Jongkind (Dutch, Latrop 1819–1891 La-Côte-Saint-André)

Oil on canvas
21 1/2 x 32 1/8 in. (54.6 x 81.6 cm)
Credit Line:
Gift of Mr. and Mrs. Walter Mendelsohn, 1980
Accession Number:
  • Signatures, Inscriptions, and Markings

    Inscription: Signed and inscribed (lower right): Souvenir du Pont Neuf / Jongkind

  • Provenance

    Louis-Charles-Emile Vial (until d. 1917; estate sale, Hôtel Drouot, Paris, March 6–7, 1918, no. 32, as "Le Vieux Pont-Neuf à Paris," for Fr 12,900); Myran Eknayan (until 1926; his sale, Hôtel Drouot, Paris, June 12, 1926, no. 37, as "Le Vieux Pont-Neuf à Paris vers 1850"); vicomte de Beuret (until 1931; his sale, Galerie Georges Petit, Paris, May 11–12, 1931, no. 21, for Fr 19,000); sale, Christie's, London, July 9, 1965, no. 111, for £3,150 ($8,820) to Mendelsohn; Mr. and Mrs. Walter Mendelsohn, New York (1965–80)

  • References

    Étienne Moreau-Nélaton. Jongkind raconté par lui-même. Paris, 1918, p. 14, fig. 15, dates it about 1850.

    Victorine Hefting. Jongkind: sa vie, son oeuvre, son époque. Paris, 1975, p. 84, no. 88, ill., under 1851; gives erroneous dimensions as 27 x 41 cm.

    Victorine Hefting. J.B. Jongkind voorloper van het impressionisme. Amsterdam, 1992, p. 45, ill., dates it 1851 and misstates dimensions as 27 x 41 cm.

    Adolph Stein et al. "Peintures." Jongkind: Catalogue critique de l'œuvre. 1, Paris, 2003, p. 84, no. 69, ill., as "Le Pont-Neuf à Paris".

  • Notes

    In 1846, Jongkind left Holland for Paris, where he entered the studio of the marine painter Eugène Isabey. Views of the Seine became a mainstay of his work. The Pont Neuf and the river's laundry barges were among his favorite motifs. This is one of three undated paintings depicting the bridge that were recently dated by scholars to 1850 (see Stein et al. 2003, nos. 69–71); others were dated by the artist himself: 1851(no. 80), 1853 (no. 109), and 1854 (no. 129). The Metropolitan canvas has been dated to about 1850 since at least 1918, when it was published by Moreau-Nélaton, who owned a sketchbook containing two early views of the Pont-Neuf drawn in pencil (Musée du Louvre, Paris, RF 11636, 17, folios 9 verso–10 recto and folio 12). There is also a watercolor of the bridge dated 1851 (see "Maitres français, XIXe–XXe siècles," exh. cat., Galerie Schmit, Paris, 1988, no. 38).

    The first known owner of the Museum's painting, the chemist Emile Vial, knew Jongkind, but it is not known when or where he acquired it. In 1918, it fetched the highest price of any work by the Jongkind in Vial's estate sale, which included eleven other paintings and five watercolors by the artist.

  • See also
    In the Museum
    Heilbrunn Timeline of Art History