Pissarro rented a large apartment at 204 rue de Rivoli in Paris for the first half of 1899. From its windows facing the Jardin des Tuileries, he painted six views of the garden (including this work and two others in the Metropolitan), in which the twin steeples of the church of Sainte-Clotilde punctuate the vast expanse of sky. Attentive to changes in light, atmosphere, and climate, as well as to the comings and goings of strollers, at different times of day and seasons of the year, Pissarro was able to extract a variety of pictures from a single site.
Use your arrow keys to navigate the tabs below, and your tab key to choose an item
Title:The Garden of the Tuileries on a Winter Afternoon
Artist:Camille Pissarro (French, Charlotte Amalie, Saint Thomas 1830–1903 Paris)
Medium:Oil on canvas
Dimensions:28 7/8 x 36 3/8 in. (73.3 x 92.4 cm)
Credit Line:Gift from the Collection of Marshall Field III, 1979
Rue de Rivoli and Jardin des Tuileries: During his previous forays to Paris in the 1890s, Pissarro chose hotels from which he could paint specific views, while his wife and children remained at home in Eragny. The year 1899 would prove to be the exception: he wrote to his oldest son to announce that he would rent an apartment in the city for the winter where the family could stay as well, “so that your mother, Cocotte, and Paul will be less bored.” (The youngest children were Jeanne-Marguerite, called Cocotte, born in 1881, and Paul-Emile, born in 1884.) On January 22, 1899, the Pissarros moved into a rental apartment at 204 rue de Rivoli, facing the Tuileries Gardens. The artist returned to the country no later than June 17. The apartment was expensive, but Pissarro rightly believed he would have no difficulty selling the canvases he would paint of the famous space first envisaged by Queen Catherine de Médicis (r. 1547–59) as a garden for the Tuileries palace (destroyed 1871). The lawns, gravel paths, sculptures, fountains, and plantings he would depict had been laid out geometrically in the mid-seventeenth century according to the design of the landscape architect André Le Nôtre, and so they had remained.
The Painting: For the 1899 Tuileries series, Pissarro chose the open, formal area shown in The Met's painting (as well as, separately, the more modern planting surrounding the Arc du Carrousel, with a pavilion of the Louvre). Beyond the Seine, which is not visible here, is the Left Bank, dominated by the silhouette of the nineteenth-century Neo-Gothic basilica of Sainte-Clotilde. At the left is a round basin in the center of an enormous space divided symmetrically by wide gravel paths and ornamented with sculpture. Within each green plot are ribbons of brown indicating flower beds. The growth is dormant. There is a wooded area to right and, in the foreground, four truncated trees: the first is smaller, while the second retains some foliage. In slanting light, throngs of pedestrians cast long diagonal blue shadows against the rosy pink that colors the pathways. Each figure is represented by one or several vertical dabs of dark paint.
There are six variants of the present composition in all. Two others belong to The Met, one very closely related (66.36), and another painted later, in spring 1899 (1992.103.3; see extended commentary on the latter painting in its catalogue entry). Eight other views are part of the series. On May 18, Durand-Ruel bought four of the former set and seven of the latter, that is, eleven of a total of fourteen works.
Katharine Baetjer 2022
 Janine Bailly-Herzberg, Correspondance de Camille Pissarro, 4/1895–1898, 1989, p. 518, letter of November 16, 1898: “ . . . qu’ainsi ta mère, Cocotte et Paul s’ennuieront moins à rester seuls à Eragny.”  For the Tuileries series Pissarro painted in 1900, see Pissarro and Snollaerts 2005, numbers 1305 to 1318.
Inscription: Signed and dated (lower right): C.Pissarro.99
[Durand-Ruel, Paris, 1899–1915; bought from the artist on May 18, 1899 for Fr 3,000; stock no. 5249; sold on November 11, 1915 for Fr 12,000 to Durand-Ruel]; [Durand-Ruel, New York, 1915–45; stock no. 3901; sold on January 18, 1945 for $9,500 to Carstairs]; [Carroll Carstairs, New York, from 1945]; Marshall Field III, New York (until d. 1956); Mrs. Marshall Field III, New York (1956–79)
Paris. Galerie Durand-Ruel. "Exposition C. Pissarro," January 14–February 2, 1901, no. 9 (possibly this picture) [see Snollaerts 2005].
Munich. Glaspalast. "VIII. Internationalen Kunstausstellung," June 1–end October 1901, no. 1350a (as "Winternachmittag").
Barcelona. Palau de Belles Artes. "V Exposición Internacional de Arte," April 27–July 1907, no. 28.
Paris. Galerie Durand-Ruel. "Pissarro," March 1908, no. 17.
St. Petersburg. Institut Français. "Exposition centennale de l'art français," January 28–?, 1912, no. 484 (as "Les jardin des Tuileries," lent by Durand-Ruel).
New York. Durand-Ruel Galleries. "Paintings by Camille Pissarro," January 27–February 12, 1916, no. 17 [see Snollaerts 2005].
Boston. Brooks Reed Gallery. December 1916–January 1917, no catalogue? [see Snollaerts 2005].
New York. Durand-Ruel Galleries. "Paintings by Pissarro," February 3–17, 1917, no. 7 [see Snollaerts 2005].
New York. Durand-Ruel Galleries. "Exhibition of Paintings by Camille Pissarro and Alfred Sisley," February 18–March 1925, no. 4 (as "Jardin des Tuileries").
Philadelphia. Palace of Fine Arts. "Sesqui-centennial International Exposition," June 1–December 1, 1926, no. 1526 [see Austin and Hauser 1929].
Bethlehem, Pa. Lehigh University Art Galleries. April–May 1928, no catalogue? [see Snollaerts 2005].
New York. Durand-Ruel. "Paintings of London–Paris," October 29–November 16, 1940, no. 2 (as "Jardin des Tuileries, après midi").
New York. Carroll Carstairs Gallery. "Six Impressionists," April 16–May 5, 1945, no. 1.
New York. Wildenstein. "Camille Pissarro: His Place in Art," October 24–November 24, 1945, no. 38 (as "Jardins des Tuileries, Automne," lent by Carroll Carstairs Gallery).
New York. Wildenstein & Co., Inc. "Modern French Painting," April 11–25, 1962, no. 50 (erroneously as "Champs de Mars aux Tuileries, 1902," lent by the collection of the late Marshall Field III, New York).
Waltham, Mass. Rose Art Museum. "Modern French Painting," May 10–June 13, 1962, no. 50.
New York. Wildenstein & Co., Inc. "C. Pissarro," March 25–May 1, 1965, no. 75 (as "Le jardin des Tuileries," lent by Mrs. Marshall Field).
New York. The Metropolitan Museum of Art. "New York Collects," July 3–September 2, 1968, no. 155 (lent by Mrs. Marshall Field).
Museum of Fine Arts, Boston. "Pleasures of Paris: Daumier to Picasso," June 5–September 1, 1991, no. 44.
New York. IBM Gallery of Science and Art. "Pleasures of Paris: Daumier to Picasso," October 15–December 28, 1991, no. 44.
Dallas Museum of Art. "The Impressionist and the City: Pissarro's Series Paintings," November 15, 1992–January 31, 1993, no. 76 (as "The Tuileries Gardens: Winter Afternoon").
Philadelphia Museum of Art. "The Impressionist and the City: Pissarro's Series Paintings," March 7–June 6, 1993, no. 76.
Brooklyn Museum of Art. "Impressionists in Winter: Effets de neige," May 27–August 29, 1999, not in catalogue.
Museum of Fine Arts, Houston. "The Masterpieces of French Painting from The Metropolitan Museum of Art: 1800–1920," February 4–May 6, 2007, no. 53.
Berlin. Neue Nationalgalerie. "Französische Meisterwerke des 19. Jahrhunderts aus dem Metropolitan Museum of Art," June 1–October 7, 2007, unnumbered cat.
Atlanta. High Museum of Art. "The Art of the Louvre's Tuileries Garden," November 3, 2013–January 19, 2014, unnumbered cat. colorpl. 53.
Toledo Museum of Art. "The Art of the Louvre's Tuileries Garden," February 13–May 11, 2014, unnumbered cat. colorpl. 53.
Portland, Oreg. Portland Art Museum. "The Art of the Louvre's Tuileries Garden," June 14–September 21, 2014, unnumbered cat. colorpl. 53.
Camille Pissarro. Letter to Lucien Pissarro. December 4, 1898 [published and translated in John Rewald, ed., "Camille Pissarro, Letters to His Son Lucien," London, 1980, p. 333], mentions that he has rented an apartment at 204 rue de Rivoli, facing the Tuileries, and plans to paint a series based on the view [PV1097–1110, 1123–1136].
Camille Pissarro. Letter to Lucien Pissarro. May 25, 1899 [published and translated in John Rewald, ed., "Camille Pissarro Letters to His Son Lucien," London, 1980, p. 336], writes that he has sent eleven of the Tuileries canvases to Durand-Ruel, including this painting [see Ref. Lloyd and Distel 1980].
Camille Pissarro. Letter to Durand-Ruel. May 17, 1899 [published in Ref. Bailly–Herzberg 1991, p. 26], lists eleven paintings sent to Durand-Ruel, including this one as no. 1, for Fr 3,000 [see Ref. Snollaerts 2005].
René Jean. L'Art français a Saint-Pétersbourg: Exposition centennale. Exh. cat.Paris, 1912, p. 85.
Arsène Alexandre. "Exposition d'art moderne à l'Hôtel de la revue 'Les arts'." Les arts no. 128 (August 1912), p. 9, ill.
Ludovic Rodo Pissarro and Lionello Venturi. Camille Pissarro, son art—son œuvre. reprint ed. 1989. Paris, 1939, vol. 1, p. 233, no. 1097; vol. 2, pl. 219, no. 1097.
Modern French Painting. Exh. cat., Wildenstein & Co., Inc. New York, 1962, unpaginated, no. 50, ill., erroneously list it as "Champs de Mars aux Tuileries" and date it 1902.
Charles S. Moffett and Anne Wagner inThe Metropolitan Museum of Art: Notable Acquisitions, 1979–1980. New York, 1980, pp. 45–46, ill., remark that this reflects Pissarro's continuing interest in studying changes in light and weather, here at a particular moment and place in Paris.
Christopher Lloyd and Anne Distel inPissarro. Exh. cat., Hayward Gallery. London, 1980, p. 146, identify this as one of the eleven canvases that Pissarro mentions he sent to Durand-Ruel in a letter of May 23, 1899 to his son Lucien.
Anne Schirrmeister. Camille Pissarro. New York, 1982, p. 17, colorpl. 15.
Christopher Lloyd inRetrospective Camille Pissarro. Exh. cat., Isetan Museum of Art. [Tokyo], 1984, p. 139, under no. 62, identifies it as part of a series of views of the Jardin des Tuileries seen from an apartment at 204 rue de Rivoli, painted between December 1898 and April 1899 (PV1097–1110); identifies the buildings visible throughout the series.
Charles S. Moffett. Impressionist and Post-Impressionist Paintings in The Metropolitan Museum of Art. New York, 1985, pp. 102–3, ill. (color).
Janine Bailly-Herzberg. Correspondance de Camille Pissarro, 1899–1903. Vol. 5, Saint-Ouen-l'Aumône, 1991, p. 26.
Richard R. Brettell and Joachim Pissarro. The Impressionist and the City: Pissarro's Series Paintings. Ed. Mary Anne Stevens. Exh. cat., Dallas Museum of Art. New Haven, 1992, pp. 102, 107, 213, no. 76, ill. (overall and detail).
Albert Kostenevich. Hidden Treasures Revealed: Impressionist Masterpieces and Other Important French Paintings Preserved by the State Hermitage Museum, St. Petersburg. Exh. cat.New York, 1995, pp. 165–66, ill.
Katharine Baetjer. European Paintings in The Metropolitan Museum of Art by Artists Born Before 1865: A Summary Catalogue. New York, 1995, p. 441, ill., as "The Garden of the Tuileries on a Winter Afternoon".
Claire Durand-Ruel Snollaerts in Joachim Pissarro and Claire Durand-Ruel Snollaerts. Pissarro: Critical Catalogue of Paintings. Milan, 2005, vol. 1, pp. 45, 59 n. 313, pp. 365, 367, 369–71, 373–75, 383–84, 394, 396, 398, 414–15; vol. 3, pp. 782–84, 811, 955, 959, no. 1257, ill. (color).
Alexia de Buffévent in Joachim Pissarro and Claire Durand-Ruel Snollaerts. Pissarro: Critical Catalogue of Paintings. Milan, 2005, vol. 1, pp. 286–88, 299, 302.
Susan Alyson Stein inThe Masterpieces of French Painting from The Metropolitan Museum of Art: 1800–1920. Exh. cat., Museum of Fine Arts, Houston. New York, 2007, pp. 77, 247–48, no. 53, ill. (color and black and white).
Susan Alyson Stein inMasterpieces of European Painting, 1800–1920, in The Metropolitan Museum of Art. New York, 2007, pp. 91, 292–93, no. 85, ill. (color and black and white).
Laura D. Corey inThe Art of the Louvre's Tuileries Garden. Exh. cat., High Museum of Art. Atlanta, 2013, pp. 84, 99, 109 n. 5, p. 174, colorpl. 53, ill. p. 82 (color detail), compares this work to Monet's "The Tuileries (study)," about 1875–76 (Musée d'Orsay, Paris), and observes that as a native of St. Thomas who spent much of his life in rural France, Pissarro "studied the Tuileries as an engaged but dispassionate outsider".
Paula Deitz inThe Art of the Louvre's Tuileries Garden. Exh. cat., High Museum of Art. Atlanta, 2013, pp. 23–25, fig. 10 (color).
The Met Collection API is where all makers, creators, researchers, and dreamers can connect to the most up-to-date data and public domain images for The Met collection. Open Access data and public domain images are available for unrestricted commercial and noncommercial use without permission or fee.
We continue to research and examine historical and cultural context for objects in The Met collection. If you have comments or questions about this object record, please complete and submit this form. The Museum looks forward to receiving your comments.