The Pond (La Mare)

Théodore Rousseau French

On view at The Met Fifth Avenue in Gallery 957

Painted during the artist’s most productive period, this landscape demonstrates Rousseau’s ability to paint naturalistic detail and vast receding space on a small scale. Rousseau renders a distant view of the wooded landscape as he sets the cattle, human figure, and trees on the far side of the pond. The luminous horizon peeks through the trees, giving light to details in the foreground such as patterns in the grass and reflections in the water.

Painted in a realistic rather than idealistic manner, this landscape’s subtle movement and gentle beauty are characteristic of Rousseau’s oeuvre. He later became associated with the Barbizon School, a group of artists who painted in and around the Forest of Fountainbleau.

The Pond (La Mare), Théodore Rousseau (French, Paris 1812–1867 Barbizon), Oil on wood

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