Rouen, the Seine Valley and more widely Normandy are considered as the land of Impressionism. The city of Rouen has played a very important role particularly in 19th-century painting. The greatest painters Claude Monet, Alfred Sisley, Paul Gauguin and Camille Pissarro have holidayed or lived in Rouen and have immortalised the monuments and neighbourhoods of the town (Boieldieu bridge, the Cathedral of Notre-Dame, the view from Sainte-Catherine’s Hill or Rue de l’Epicerie) and the nearby banks of the Seine (La Bouille and Sahurs).
The École de Rouen
Outside of the Impressionist movement, famous over the world, Rouen was the birthplace of the postimpressionist movement. For long years this movement housed a prestigious school of painting known today under the name of École de Rouen. Artists and painters such as Albert Lebourg, Charles Angrand, Robert-Antoine Pinchon, Marcel Couchaux, Charles Fréchon and Joseph Delattre made up this school.
The École de Rouen is defined as a collection of young painters born between 1849 and 1890 in Rouen and in the region of the banks of the Seine.
Through their works, these painters succeeded in expressing their attachment to their homeland but also capturing the changing and misty ethereal atmosphere, so particular to the banks of the Seine and the Normandy woodland.