Femmes de Tahiti OR Sur la plage (1891) by Paul Gauguin

Femmes de Tahiti OR Sur la plage - Paul Gauguin - 1891

Artwork Information

TitleFemmes de Tahiti OR Sur la plage
ArtistPaul Gauguin
MediumOil on Canvas
Dimensions69 x 91,5 cm
Art MovementCloisonnism
Current LocationMusee d'Orsay, Paris
Location Created French Polynesia

About Femmes de Tahiti OR Sur la plage

The artwork “Femmes de Tahiti” or “Sur la plage” by Paul Gauguin was created in 1891 as an oil on canvas. This piece represents the Cloisonnism art movement and falls under the genre “scène de genre,” depicting everyday life scenes. The artwork measures 69 by 91.5 centimeters and is currently housed in the Musée d’Orsay in Paris. Paul Gauguin created this work while he was in French Polynesia, reflecting the influences of the local culture and environment on his style.

In the artwork, two Tahitian women are featured; they are depicted in a relaxed, everyday setting on the beach. The woman on the left is seated in profile, her body turned away from the viewer, looking out towards the sea. She wears a simple blue dress with a white cloth draped over one shoulder and has flowers adorning her hair, suggesting a connection to the local flora. The woman on the right is facing the viewer, seated cross-legged, and dressed in a pink garment with a matching pink hair accessory. Her gaze is directed downwards, creating a contemplative atmosphere.

Gauguin’s technique showcases the simplified forms and bold outlines characteristic of Cloisonnism, evidenced by the flat planes of color and the stark divisions between elements in the composition. The colors employed are both vivid and earthy, capturing the essence of the tropical landscape and Polynesian attire. The painting evokes an intimate scene of daily life in Tahiti, inviting contemplation of the cultural and social context of the figures within it.

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