Tuesday, June 14, 2016

Oriental Girl with a Pomegranate (1875)

William Bouguereau: Oriental Girl with a Pomegranate

In L’Orientale á la grenade (Girl with a Pomegranate), a young girl, her hair covered, holds a pomegranate in delicate hands. The colors occur in jewel tones—the creased gold, purple and pink of her headdress, the bright teal on the seams of her clothing, the pink outer layer of the pomegranate in contrast to the woody color of its inner flesh as she peels it away. Her face and features are soft and innocent; her silver earrings hint at intricate North African design. William-Adolphe Bouguereau painted the work, one of a relative few of the artist’s paintings with Oriental subjects, in 1875. In Sotheby’s 19th Century European Art auction on May 4, 2012, the painting sold for $2,322,500, significantly higher than its estimate of $500,000 to $700,000. [The Driehaus Museum]

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