Charles-Francoise Daubigny

Les Vendanges L.D. 117 III/V, c.1865
9.38 x 14.25 in
SKU: 5952g
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Charles Francois Daubigny's etching from around 1865 is an example of the Barbizon painters' preoccupations. Entitled "Les Vendages," the work depicts peasants bringing in the harvest. The central image shows a figure gathering the crop into baskets. In the center of the image, placid cows congregate around the baskets. In the right middle ground, another worker is harvesting the crop. This is a pastoral image of country life in which the workers and livestock are in peaceful communion with the land. After the 1848 revolution in France, however, the depiction of peasants took on a different form from their representation as a part of picturesque country life. Artists like Gustave Courbet's and Jean-Francois Millet's pictures of peasants as a main subject were seen by conservative critics not only as "aesthetic willfulness" but also as "political provocation." It is unlikely that Daubigny's etching, however, which seems to be printed for mass consumption was aligned with Courbet's and Millet's political aims in the depiction of rural life.


Artwork Size: 9 3/8" x 14 1/4"
Frame Size: 17 2/4" x 22 1/2"


Artist Bio:


Charles Francois Daubigny, French landscape painter, allied with the Barbizon School, was born in Paris on the 15th of February 1817, but spent much time as a child at Valmondois, a village on the Oise to the northwest of Paris. Daubigny was the son of an artist, and most of his family were painters. He began to paint very early in life, and at the age of seventeen he took a studio of his own. Within twelve months he had saved enough to go to Italy, where he studied and painted for nearly two years; he then returned to Paris, not to leave it again until, in 1860, he took a house at Auvers on the Oise. By 1837 Daubigny had become famous as a river and landscape painter, although he had been devoting himself as well to drawing in black-and-white, to etching, wood engraving, and lithography. In 1855 his picture, "Lock at Optevoz", now in the Louvre, was purchased by the state; four years later Daubigny was created knight of the Legion of Honor, and in 1874 he was promoted to be an officer. In 1866, at the invitation of Frederick Leighton and others, he visited London, where, however, he was hurt by his now famous "Moonlight" being badly hung in the Old Royal Academy. But the personal encouragement of his admirers in England made up for the disappointment, and the sale of his picture to a Royal Academician greatly pleased him. In 1870-71 he again visited London, and subsequently Holland, where he painted a number of river scenes with windmills. In 1874, having returned to Paris, he fell ill, and from that time until he died (on the 19th of February 1878) his work won less distinction than before. In 1904 the municipality of Auvers-sur-Oise decided to erect a bronze monument to Daubigny's memory.