One of the major figures in the landscape revolution of this time, Sisley was the son of an Englishman who manufactured artificial flowers. He befriended Claude Monet, Pierre-Auguste Renoir, and Frédéric Bazille in the early 1860s and spent most of his working life not in Paris but in smaller towns along the rivers Seine and Loing. In the early 1870s, he often painted with Monet and with Camille Pissarro at such towns as Louveciennes and Argenteuil.
This painting shows an ordinary yard behind a suburban residence, with its gardener’s shed, cold frame, and greenhouse. Earthen paths surround beds planted with both vegetables and cutting flowers. Dating from the time just before the first Impressionist exhibition, the work demonstrates its author’s fondness for delicate touches of the brush and for luminous color. Sisley juxtaposes the old with the new: beyond the old-fashioned garden two buildings in the distance—at the geometric center of the composition—suggest the presence of new construction in an otherwise rural area.
Galerie Durand-Ruel, Paris (no. D 13816), by whom acquired by from the artist on April 25, 1890, with the title Jardin de Fleurs (Flower Garden);
Frank Thompson (1841–1899), Philadelphia, by whom acquired from the above on 20 November 1890;
Anne Thompson (1872–1954), Philadelphia, by descent from the above;
Galerie Durand-Ruel, New York (no. 3315), by whom acquired from the above on April 17, 1909, with the title Potager (Kitchen Garden);
Kunsthandel Huinck & Scherjon, Amsterdam (no. 622), by whom acquired from the above on June 4, 1931;
J. W. Verloop, Bilthoven, Netherlands, from the above;
the painting remained in this collection until it was purchased by Kimbell Art Foundation, Fort Worth, 2015.
Gift of Anne W. Marion in honor of Kay Fortson, 2015