Auguste Renoir (French, 1841–1919)
Oarsmen at Chatou, 1879
On the Seine approximately nine miles west of Paris, Chatou was a site popular with Parisian day-trippers. Its accessibility to the capital and its proximity to the water made it ideal for various leisure activities, including swimming, promenading, and, of course, boating. Oarsmen at Chatou depicts what would have been a familiar scene to Renoir (French, 1841–1919). “The chic thing to do on Sundays,” he later reminisced, “was to bring pretty girls rowing there. . . . It was there that I found models who were willing, if for an instant, to lend me their youth and grace.”
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