Jean Honoré Fragonard (French, 17321806)
Red chalk; 19 11/16 x 14 3/4 in. (50 x 37.5 cm)
Purchase, The Annenberg Foundation Gift, 2006 (2006.353.1)
A Fisherman Leaning on an Oar, 1774
Jean–Honoré Fragonard (French, 17321806)
Red chalk; 19 7/8 x 13 1/8 in. (50.4 x 33.3 cm)
Purchase, The Annenberg Foundation Gift, 2006 (2006.353.2)
This pair of drawings almost certainly dates to the spring of 1774, when Fragonard and his patron, Pierre-Jacques Onésyme Bergeret de Grancourt, were lodged at the edge of the Bay of Naples. With their confident and broad handling, the drawings capture the fall of late afternoon sunlight on two barefoot fishermen. In these freshly observed studies, Fragonard has reinvigorated the tradition of traveling artists depicting local figures by adopting a monumental scale.