Auguste Renoir | Figures on the Beach, 1890

Figures on the Beach
Artist: Auguste Renoir (French, Limoges 1841–1919 Cagnes-sur-Mer)
Date: 1890
Medium: Oil on canvas
Dimensions: 20 3/4 x 25 1/4 in. (52.7 x 64.1 cm)
Classification: Paintings
Credit Line: Robert Lehman Collection, 1975
Accession Number:  1975.1.198
On view at The Met Fifth Avenue in Gallery 961


Probably painted in 1890 on the Cote d’Azur in southern France, this sun-filled painting shows two female figures at the beach.
The seated figure is shown in profile, her right hand holding a parasol on the sand. She exchanges a look with the standing figure to her right who holds a basket at her side.
The women are joined by a small white dog, and before the water stands a young boy dressed in blue, seemingly throwing an object into the ocean.
The standing figure serves as a vertical force which connects the horizontally banded foreground, water, and sky.
The women appear carefree and neither at work nor in the presence of men.
Painted later in Renoir’s career, a period at which point the artist expressed skepticism of industrialism and machines, this quiet seascape pays homage to the resplendent beauty of what is ordinary and simple. | © The Metropolitan Museum of Art


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