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Wednesday 13 October 2021

Alfred Louis Brunet-Debaines’ chalk drawing, “The Old Mill of Vennon”, 1868

Alfred Louis Brunet-Debaines (1845–1939)

“The Old Mill of Vennon” (Le Vieux Moulin de Vernon), 1868—note that on the original mount of this drawing was once inscribed, “Le Havre 1843”, but I suspect that the true subject is the old 16th century flour mill built on an old bridge situated further up the Seine River (see Kaushik Patowary’s marvellous [2016] account [with photographs] of this mill: Note also that the date inscribed on the drawing seems closer to “1868” than “1843”, but the date appears to have been overwritten/altered).

Drawing in black and white chalk on brown paper (possibly Michallet laid paper based on the ribbed surface, but I cannot see a watermark to confirm this proposal), signed and dated in ink and backed with a support sheet. 

Size: (support sheet) 39.7 x 48.5 cm; (sheet) 25.7 x 37 cm.

Inscribed in brown ink at lower right corner: “Brunet-Debaines/ 1868”

Condition: beyond a restored pinhole in the sky at upper left (virtually invisible) the sheet is in an excellent condition with no tears, significant holes, folds, abrasions, stains, or foxing. The drawing was originally pasted onto into a passe-partout mount, but this has been removed revealing the present curved upper corners and the sheet has been laid onto a support of archival (millennium quality) washi paper.

I am selling this magnificent drawing of great subtlety that may well be of historical significance as it shows the old flour mill at Vernon before it was damaged by bombing during the Second World Warinterestingly, the subject also features in Claude Monet’s painting, “Houses on the Old Bridge at Vernon", 1883 (New Orleans Museum of Art)—for the total cost of AU$762 (currently US$559.45/EUR484.26/GBP411.08 at the time of this listing) including postage and handling to anywhere in the world, but not (of course) any import duties/taxes imposed by some countries.

If you are interested in purchasing this masterly executed signed and dated drawing where the tone of the red-ochre paper serves as the mid-tone between the white and black of the chalk strokes, please contact me ( and I will send you a PayPal invoice to make the payment easy.

This drawing has been sold 

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