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Luce Foundation Center for American Art

Painting: 19th century: A Breton Sunday




Eugene Laurent Vail

(born Saint-Servan, France 1857 -- died Paris, France 1934)

Eugene Vail was born in France and spent much of his life there. When he was young his father insisted he learn a “practical” skill, so he attended the Stevens Institute of Technology in Hoboken, New Jersey. After graduating, he joined the military and took part in a western expedition, where he made sketches of the landscape. Vail studied with the artists William Merritt Chase and J. Carroll Beckwith at the Art Students League in New York, then traveled to Paris to attend the École des Beaux-Arts. He settled in Brittany and spent his summers on the coast, painting images of fishermen and peasants.




Luce Center for American Art