Blonde Bather

Renoir painted this work while traveling in Italy; the model is probably Aline Charigot, who later became his wife. The simplicity of the composition gives the nude a monumental presence that suggests a timeless image of womanhood. Renoir was inspired in this approach by the ancient Roman and Italian Renaissance art he saw on his trip, which he described as representing “eternal beauty.”

Provenance

The artist, to Henri Vever, Paris (1882–1897, his sale, Galerie Georges Petit, Paris, 1–2 Feb. 1897, no. 96, sold to Durand-Ruel); [Durand-Ruel, Paris and New York, 1897–1926, sold to Clark, 2 July 1926, as Baigneuse]; Robert Sterling Clark (1926–55); Sterling and Francine Clark Art Institute, 1955.

Pierre-Auguste Renoir

French, 1841–1919

Blonde Bather

1881

Oil on canvas

32 1/8 x 25 3/4 in. (81.6 x 65.4 cm) Frame: 41 7/8 x 35 5/8 x 4 1/2 in. (106.4 x 90.5 x 11.4 cm)


Acquired by Sterling and Francine Clark, 1926

1955.609


ON VIEW