Camille Pissarro – Le Pere Melon Market Insights

  • The record price for a Pissarro painting at auction was set in February 2014 when a cityscape from 1897 sold for $32M USD. More recently, an 1888 canvas depicting two peasants achieved the second-highest price for Pissarro at auction, selling for over $17M USD in February 2020, demonstrating the strength of the artist’s market.

  • The graph prepared by Art Market Research shows that since 1976, paintings by Pissarro have increased at a 5.3% annual rate of return.

  • As his Impressionist contemporaries reach staggering new sums every year, attention is directed to the relatively accessible works of Camille Pissarro. In 2019, Meules (1891) by Claude Monet sold for over $110M USD, setting a world record at auction for the artist. 

  • The market for Pissarro remains a fruitful area for appreciation as the record for Pissarro at auction is $32M USD. There is much more room for the Pissarro market to grow as his contemporaries’ supply of paintings dry up completely.  This impending market scarcity forces a re-evaluation of Pissarro, one of the historically monetarily undervalued Impressionist Masters. 

  • Camille_PISSARRO_AMR_Graph-1

Top Results at Auction

Le boulevard Montmartre, matinée de printemps, 1897, oil on canvas, 25.6 x 31.9 in. Sold at auction February 2014 for $32,092,776
Le boulevard Montmartre, matinée de printemps, 1897, oil on canvas, 25.6 x 31.9 in. Sold at auction February 2014 for $32,092,776
Gelée blanche, jeune paysanne faisant du feu, 1888, oil on canvas, 36.5 x 36.4 in. Sold at auction February 2020 for $17,322,174
Gelée blanche, jeune paysanne faisant du feu, 1888, oil on canvas, 36.5 x 36.4 in. Sold at auction February 2020 for $17,322,174
La Rue Saint-Lazare, temps lumineux, 1893, oil on canvas, 28.8 x 23.7 in. Sold at auction November 2018 for $12,350,000
La Rue Saint-Lazare, temps lumineux, 1893, oil on canvas, 28.8 x 23.7 in. Sold at auction November 2018 for $12,350,000
Jardin et poulailler chez Octave Mirbeau, Les Damps, 1892, oil on canvas, 28.9 x 36.2 in. Sold at auction November 2019 for $10,263,000
Jardin et poulailler chez Octave Mirbeau, Les Damps, 1892, oil on canvas, 28.9 x 36.2 in. Sold at auction November 2019 for $10,263,000

Comparable Paintings Sold at Auction

La récolte des pommes de terre (1886), gouache over pencil on silk laid down on board, 11.2 x 16 in. Sold at auction May 2018 for $1,572,000
La récolte des pommes de terre (1886), gouache over pencil on silk laid down on board, 11.2 x 16 in. Sold at auction May 2018 for $1,572,000
  • Later painting than Le Pere Melon, similar medium of gouache but on board
  • Rockefeller provenance was helpful to achieving high result
  • Many figures pictured, but scene is a bit bland when compared to Le Pere Melon  which has more direct action in the foreground
Marché à la volaille à Gisors (1890), gouache and pastel on linen, 18.1 x 15.2 in. Sold at auction June 2014 for $1,126,892
Marché à la volaille à Gisors (1890), gouache and pastel on linen, 18.1 x 15.2 in. Sold at auction June 2014 for $1,126,892
  • Same medium but slightly larger than Le Pere Melon
  • Done 10 years later than Le Pere Melon and not during the important timeframe of the Paris Impressionist Salons between 1874-1886
  • Sale is from 2014, the market for Pissarro has increased at a rate of 5.3% since then
Travailleurs des champs, Pontoise (1880), gouache and pastel laid down on board, 10 x 12 in. Sold at auction May 2015 for $905,000
Travailleurs des champs, Pontoise (1880), gouache and pastel laid down on board, 10 x 12 in. Sold at auction May 2015 for $905,000
  • A very small painting (less than ½ size of Le Pere Melon) done in the same desirous year, 1880
  • Sold at a small auction house – perhaps at a more “name brand” house it would have achieved a higher result, still very strong for a work on board
  • Pissarro was known at this time for celebrating rural workers in his compositions, which continued an important change in art history of the celebration of everyday individuals, similar to Le Pere Melon.
La foire de Gisors (1889), gouache over pencil on silk laid down on canvas, 12 x 9 1/2 in. Sold at auction November 2013 for $893,000
La foire de Gisors (1889), gouache over pencil on silk laid down on canvas, 12 x 9 1/2 in. Sold at auction November 2013 for $893,000
  • Almost same size as Le Pere Melon, similar medium, but later date of 1889
  • Sold in 2013, the market for his work has improved since that time