In the summer of 1999, I spent ten weeks at The Barnes Foundation in Philadelphia. Dr. Albert Barnes was a legendary art collector, & a connoisseur of modern French art – he acquired, among other works, 181 paintings by the impressionist master Auguste Renoir. Seeing that this work by Renoir is exhibited by Nahmad Projects in London, makes me nostalgic!
P.S. I agree with Colin Bailey’s description of Jeanne Samary’s portrait, quoted below:
“Depicted here at the height of her acting career, Samary was renowned for her infectious laugh and the hint of coarseness that she brought to her performances. However, here Renoir chose to depict her as a demure young woman – the quintessential “star”.
Colin Bailey has described this version as ‘resolute and audacious, indeed among the most ravishing of all Renoir’s Impressionist portraits… Painted with a parrot-colored palette, it conveys the glamour that we now associate automatically with celebrities of the stage… in a way that no other theatrical portrait of his time succeeds in doing’ (1997).
Auguste Renoir, ‘Portrait de Jeanne Samary’ (c.1879-1880), courtesy Nahmad Projects