Dance at Bougival (1883) by Pierre-Auguste Renoir

Dance at Bougival - Pierre-Auguste Renoir - 1883

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Artwork Information

TitleDance at Bougival
ArtistPierre-Auguste Renoir
Date1883
Mediumoil,canvas
Dimensions98 x 182 cm
Art MovementImpressionism
Current LocationMuseum of Fine Arts (MFA), Boston, MA, US

About Dance at Bougival

The artwork “Dance at Bougival” is an 1883 oil on canvas painting by impressionist artist Pierre-Auguste Renoir. This piece exemplifies the genre painting tradition, capturing the vivacity of social dance. It measures 98 by 182 centimeters and is housed in the Museum of Fine Arts (MFA) in Boston, MA, USA. As a notable work from the Impressionism movement, it explores the play of light and color to convey a sense of immediacy and movement.

The painting depicts a man and a woman engaged in a dance. The focal point is the couple, portrayed in a close embrace that conveys the rhythm and intimacy of their movement. The woman, featured with a gentle expression, is adorned in a flowing white dress accentuated with delicate pink frills and a vibrant red sash, with a matching red hat embellished with flowers. The man is dressed in a darker, less formal attire, juxtaposed by a straw hat, leaning in towards his dance partner with a sense of casual elegance.

The background is a blur of festive activity; other figures appear behind the couple, framed by dappled greenery, imbuing the scene with a sense of convivial atmosphere typical of an outdoor café or dance venue. Renoir’s brushwork is loose and fluid, emblematic of the Impressionist style, with an emphasis on capturing the fleeting effects of light and the sense of a fleeting moment captured in perpetuity.

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