Pierre-Auguste Renoir (1841-1919)
Outskirts at Pont-Aven, 1888-1890
Oil on canvas
25 ½ x 21 ½ in. (65 x 54.5 cm)
Samuel Courtauld Trust: Princes Gate Bequest, 1978


This landscape painting from 1888–90 shows the outskirts of the Breton village of Pont-Aven, a thriving artistic community where artist Paul Gauguin often spent time. Pierre-Auguste Renoir depicts a bucolic scene of clustered white houses with red-tiled roofs, screened through a foreground of slender trees. Painted somewhat sketchily in a high-keyed palette, the work suggests nature directly observed in strong light. An increased definition, density of forms, and overall architectonic structure, however, reflect an evolution in Renoir’s practice during the 1880s towards a more formal approach emphasizing stricter drawing.
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