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A Waitress at Duval's Restaurant

Auguste Renoir (French, Limoges 1841–1919 Cagnes-sur-Mer)

Date:
ca. 1875
Medium:
Oil on canvas
Dimensions:
39 1/2 x 28 1/8 in. (100.3 x 71.4 cm)
Classification:
Paintings
Credit Line:
Bequest of Stephen C. Clark, 1960
Accession Number:
61.101.14
  • Gallery Label

    Renoir portrays a waitress who worked at one of several Parisian restaurants established by a butcher named Duval. An 1881 Baedeker guidebook described these "Établissements de Bouillon" as offering a limited and affordable menu to patrons "waited on by women, soberly garbed, and not unlike sisters of charity." Renoir imparted to his comely model an unaffected grace. As he once said, "I like painting best when it looks eternal without boasting about it: an everyday eternity, revealed on the street corner: a servant-girl pausing a moment as she scours a saucepan, and becoming a Juno on Olympus."

  • Signatures, Inscriptions, and Markings

    Inscription: Signed (lower left): Renoir.

  • Provenance

    Georges Charpentier, Paris (until 1885; sold on October 31, for Fr 800, to Durand-Ruel); [Durand-Ruel, Paris, 1885–1906; stock nos. 762 (stockbook 1884–90) and 41 (new stockbook, 1891), as "La servante"; sold on February 3, 1906, for Fr 15,000 to Hébrard for Wagram]; Louis-Alexandre Berthier, prince de Wagram, Paris (1906–9; consigned on October 6, 1909 to Galerie Druet, Paris; sold in 1910 for Fr 12,000 to Barbazanges); [Barbazanges, Paris, 1910–12; sold in 1912 to Shcherbatov]; Sergei Aleksandrovich Shcherbatov, Moscow (1912–18/19); Museum of Modern Western Art, Moscow (1918/19–33; cat. 1928, p. 90, no. 508, sold on May 9, 1933 through Knoedler to Clark); Stephen C. Clark, New York (1933–d. 1960)

  • Exhibition History

    New York. American Art Association. "Works in Oil and Pastel by the Impressionists of Paris," April 10–28, 1886, no. 213 (as "A Servant").

    New York. National Academy of Design. "Works in Oil and Pastel by the Impressionists of Paris," May 25–June 30, 1886, no. 213.

    Berlin. Galerie Cassirer. "Renoir," December 1901, no. 19.

    St. Petersburg. Institut Français. "Exposition centennale de l'art français," January 28–?, 1912, no. 529 (as "La Bonne de chez Duval," lent by Barbazanges) [see Jean 1912].

    New York. Century Club. "French Masterpieces of the Nineteenth Century," January 11–February 10, 1936, no. 15 (as "Une servante de chez Duval," lent by Stephen C. Clark, Esq.).

    New York. The Metropolitan Museum of Art. "Renoir: A Special Exhibition of His Paintings," May 18–September 12, 1937, no. 13 (lent by Stephen C. Clark).

    New York. World's Fair. "Masterpieces of Art: European & American Paintings, 1500–1900," May–October 1940, no. 336 (lent by Mr. Stephen C. Clark).

    New York. Duveen Galleries. "Renoir, Centennial Loan Exhibition, 1841-1941," November 8–December 6, 1941, no. 15 (as "Une Servante de chez Duval [A Waitress at Duval's]" lent by Mr. Stephen C. Clark, New York).

    New York. Century Association. "Paintings from the Stephen C. Clark Collection," June 6–September 28, 1946, unnum. checklist.

    New York. Paul Rosenberg & Co.. "Collectors' Choice: Masterpieces of French Art from New York Private Collections," March 17–April 18, 1953, no. 5 (as "A Waitress of the Duval Restaurant," lent by Mr. Stephen C. Clark).

    New York. M. Knoedler & Co.. "A Collectors Taste: Selections from the Collection of Mr. and Mrs. Stephen C. Clark," January 12–30, 1954, no. 14.

    New Haven. Yale University Art Gallery. "Pictures Collected by Yale Alumni," May 8–June 18, 1956, no. 110 (lent by Stephen C. Clark).

    New York. Wildenstein. "Renoir," April 8–May 10, 1958, no. 11 (lent by Stephen C. Clark).

    New York. The Metropolitan Museum of Art. "Paintings from Private Collections: Summer Loan Exhibition," July 1–September 1, 1958, no. 113 (lent by Stephen C. Clark).

    Washington. National Gallery of Art. "Masterpieces of Impressionist and Post-Impressionist Painting," April 25–May 24, 1959, unnumbered cat. (p. 41, lent by Stephen C. Clark).

    New York. The Metropolitan Museum of Art. "Paintings from Private Collections: Summer Loan Exhibition," July 7–September 7, 1959, no. 89 (lent by Stephen C. Clark).

    New York. The Metropolitan Museum of Art. "Paintings from Private Collections: Summer Loan Exhibition," July 6–September 4, 1960, no. 94 (lent by Stephen C. Clark).

    Amsterdam. Rijksmuseum Vincent Van Gogh. "Franse meesters uit het Metropolitan Museum of Art: Realisten en Impressionisten," March 15–May 31, 1987, no. 18.

    Leningrad [St. Petersburg]. State Hermitage Museum. "From Delacroix to Matisse," March 15–May 10, 1988, no. 19.

    Moscow. Pushkin State Museum of Fine Arts. "From Delacroix to Matisse," June 10–July 30, 1988, no. 19.

    Fort Lauderdale. Museum of Art. "Corot to Cézanne: 19th Century French Paintings from The Metropolitan Museum of Art," December 22, 1992–April 11, 1993, no catalogue.

    San Diego Museum of Art. "Idol of the Moderns: Pierre Auguste Renoir and American Painting," June 29–September 15, 2002, no. 2 (as "The Waitress at Duval's Restaurant").

    El Paso Museum of Art. "Idol of the Moderns: Pierre Auguste Renoir and American Painting," November 3, 2002–February 16, 2003, no. 2 (as "The Waitress at Duval's Restaurant").

    Williamstown, Mass. Sterling and Francine Clark Art Institute. "The Clark Brothers Collect: Impressionist and Early Modern Paintings," June 4–September 4, 2006, no. 340.

    Museum of Fine Arts, Houston. "The Masterpieces of French Painting from The Metropolitan Museum of Art: 1800–1920," February 4–May 6, 2007, no. 97.

    New York. The Metropolitan Museum of Art. "The Clark Brothers Collect: Impressionist and Early Modern Paintings," May 22–August 19, 2007, no. 340.

  • References

    Louis Hautecœur. "L'Exposition centennale de peinture française à Saint-Pétersbourg." Les Arts no. 129 (September 1912), ill. p. 30, as in the collection of M. Barbazanges.

    René Jean. L'Art français a Saint-Pétersbourg: Exposition centennale. Exh. cat.Paris, 1912, p. 90, notes that it was lent to the 1912 exhibition in St. Petersburg by Barbazanges and has since been bought by a Russian private collector.

    François Monod. "L'Exposition centennale de l'art français à Saint-Pétersbourg (2e et dernier article)." Gazette des beaux-arts, 4th ser., 7 (April 1912), p. 318.

    François Fosca. Renoir. Paris, 1923, pl. 17.

    [Boris Nikolaevich] Ternovietz. "Le Musée d'Art Moderne de Moscou." L'Amour de l'art 6 (December 1925), pp. 459, 462, ill., notes that this picture was bought at the 1912 exhibition in St. Petersburg by S. A. Scherbatow.

    Musée d'art moderne de Moscou: Catalogue illustré. Moscow, 1928, p. 90, no. 508, pl. 21.

    Louis Réau. Catalogue de l'art français dans les musées russes. Paris, 1929, pp. 129–30, no. 1079.

    Alfred M. Frankfurter. "French Masterpieces, 1850–1900: An Important Loan Exhibition of Painting Currently at the Century Club." Art News 34 (February 1, 1936), pp. 5–6, ill.

    Augustus Vincent Tack. Exhibition of French Masterpieces of the Nineteenth Century. Exh. cat., Century Club. New York, 1936, unpaginated, no. 15, ill., tentatively dates it 1875.

    Josephine L. Allen. "Paintings by Renoir." Metropolitan Museum of Art Bulletin 32 (May 1937), pp. 109, 112, ill., comments that it portrays the waitress "who doubtless served many of Renoir's meager meals".

    Henry McBride. "The Renoirs in America." Art News 35 (May 1, 1937), p. 158, ill. p. 73.

    Harry B. Wehle. Renoir: A Special Exhibition of His Paintings. Exh. cat., The Metropolitan Museum of Art. New York, 1937, p. 5, no. 13, ill.

    James W. Lane. "Thirty-three Masterpieces in a Modern Collection: Mr. Stephen C. Clark's Paintings by American and European Masters." Art News Annual 37 (February 25, 1939), p. 132, ill. p. 138, dates it 1875–76; notes the similar pose of the figure in Renoir's "Madame Henriot in Costume" also of 1875–76 (Columbus Museum of Art; D123); compares the delicate colors in this picture to Japanese prints and Whistler's portraits from the early 1880s.

    Alfred M. Frankfurter. Renoir, Centennial Loan Exhibition, 1841–1941. Exh. cat., Duveen Galleries. New York, 1941, pp. 17, 124–25, no. 15, ill. p. 37, dates it about 1875; notes that Renoir met this waitress at one of the restaurants belonging to the Duval chain in Paris, and that he asked her to pose in his studio after being "impressed by the uniform dress of the waitresses".

    Michel Drucker. Renoir. Paris, 1944, pp. 39, 41, 191, no. 23, ill.

    Hans Huth. "Impressionism Comes to America." Gazette des beaux-arts, 6th ser., 29 (April 1946), p. 239 n. 22.

    Howard Devree. "Stephen C. Clarks Open Art Show at Home to Help Fresh Air Association of St. John." New York Times (April 2, 1948), p. 21.

    C. A. "L'Art moderne français dans les collections des musées étrangers—I. Musée d'Art Moderne Occidental à Moscou." Cahiers d'art 25, no. 2 (1950), p. 346, no. 10.

    A Collector's Taste: Selections from the Collection of Mr. and Mrs. Stephen C. Clark. Exh. cat., M. Knoedler & Co. New York, 1954, unpaginated, no. 14, ill.

    Denis Rouart. Renoir. Geneva, 1954, p. 32.

    Charles Sterling and Margaretta M. Salinger. "XIX–XX Centuries." French Paintings: A Catalogue of the Collection of The Metropolitan Museum of Art. 3, New York, 1967, pp. 147–48, ill., tentatively date it about 1875 and identify it as possibly no. 213 in Exh. New York 1886; note that the Duval restaurants were a low-priced chain "in which Renoir may have eaten many times during his early, difficult years" and that this waitress was "clearly one of those placid women Renoir always loved to paint".

    Margaretta M. Salinger. "Windows Open to Nature." Metropolitan Museum of Art Bulletin 27 (Summer 1968), unpaginated, ill.

    François Daulte. "Figures." Auguste Renoir: Catalogue raisonné de l'œuvre peint. 1, Lausanne, 1971, unpaginated, no. 101, ill., dates it 1874.

    Elda Fezzi. L'opera completa di Renoir. [reprint ed., 1981]. Milan, 1972, pp. 94–95, no. 128, ill.

    Robert C. Williams. Russian Art and American Money, 1900–1940. Cambridge, Mass., 1980, p. 34.

    Anne Distel in Renoir. Exh. cat., Hayward Gallery. [London], 1985, p. 26 [French ed., p. 42].

    Charles S. Moffett. Impressionist and Post-Impressionist Paintings in The Metropolitan Museum of Art. New York, 1985, pp. 91, 157, ill. (color).

    Roger Hurlburt. "Free Spirits." Sun-Sentinel (Fort Lauderdale) (December 20, 1992), ill. p. 1D.

    Helen Kohen. "Lasting Impressions." Miami Herald (December 20, 1992), p. 6I.

    Albert Kostenevich in Morozov and Shchukin—The Russian Collectors: Monet to Picasso. Exh. cat., Museum Folkwang Essen. Cologne, 1993, pp. 122, 129 n. 166.

    Sarah Lees in The Clark Brothers Collect: Impressionist and Early Modern Paintings. Exh. cat., Sterling and Francine Clark Art Institute. Williamstown, Mass., 2006, pp. 315, 341, no. 340.

    Richard Rand in The Clark Brothers Collect: Impressionist and Early Modern Paintings. Exh. cat., Sterling and Francine Clark Art Institute. Williamstown, Mass., 2006, p. 253.

    Gilbert T. Vincent and Sarah Lees in The Clark Brothers Collect: Impressionist and Early Modern Paintings. Exh. cat., Sterling and Francine Clark Art Institute. Williamstown, Mass., 2006, p. 156, fig. 127 (color).

    Guy-Patrice Dauberville, and Michel Dauberville, with Camille Fremontier-Murphy. "1858–1881." Renoir: Catalogue raisonné des tableaux, pastels, dessins et aquarelles. 1, Paris, 2007, pp. 436–37, no. 415, ill.

    Susan Alyson Stein in The Masterpieces of French Painting from The Metropolitan Museum of Art: 1800–1920. Exh. cat., Museum of Fine Arts, Houston. New York, 2007, pp. 135, 251–52, no. 97, ill. (color and black and white).

    Susan Alyson Stein in Masterpieces of European Painting, 1800–1920, in The Metropolitan Museum of Art. New York, 2007, pp. 151, 297, no. 140, ill. (color and black and white).



  • Notes

    Renoir must have eaten many times at one of the Duval chain of low-priced restaurants in Paris during his early years. This portrait of a waitress in her restaurant uniform was painted about 1875.

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