Sketches of Heads (The Berard Children)
At first glance, this painting may seem like an unfinished sketch. The children do not occupy a cohesive space, and some appear more than once. Renoir, however, considered it finished, and exhibited it in 1883. He painted several portraits of his friend and patron Paul Berard, his wife Marguerite, and their four children. This portrait’s unusual format suggests that instead of asking the children to pose formally, Renoir painted them reading, sleeping, or otherwise occupied during one of his stays at the Berard country estate.
|Medium||oil on canvas|
|Dimensions||24 5/8 x 32 1/4 in. (62.6 x 81.9 cm) Frame: 33 1/4 x 39 9/16 in. (84.5 x 100.5 cm)|
|Acquisition||Acquired by Sterling and Francine Clark before 1955|
Pierre-Auguste Renoir, Sketches of Heads (The Berard Children), 1881, oil on canvas. Clark Art Institute, 1955.590
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EUROPEAN PAINTINGS CATALOGUE ENTRY
Paul Berard, father of the sitters, Wargemont and Paris (1881–1905; his sale, Georges Petit, Paris, 8 May 1905, no. 16, ill., as Les Enfants, sold to Pra); Albert Pra, Paris (1905–38; his sale, Galerie Charpentier, Paris, 17 June 1938, no. 52, ill., as Têtes d’enfants, sold to Knoedler); [Knoedler, New York, sold to Clark, 30 June 1938, as Têtes d’enfants]; Robert Sterling Clark (1938–55); Sterling and Francine Clark Art Institute, 1955.