La Toilette is a masterpiece oil-on-canvas painting completed by Frédéric Bazille in 1869-70 just before his death during the Franco-Prussian War. The painting depicts a woman being assisted to undress by two maids, with one of her breasts discreetly exposed. The artwork features unique painting techniques and measures smaller than most of Bazille’s other works, remaining unfinished to this day.
One can visit La Toilette at the Musée Fabre in Montpellier, France. Despite its minute size, it stands out for its use of color and brushstrokes that give life and emotion to the subject figures placed within landscapes painted en plein air. Notably, although unnoticed by many until recently with new technology, the painting reveals a large goiter visible on one of the maids’ necks.
Bazille was only twenty-three years old when he created La Toilette along with several other famous paintings like The Pink Dress. Despite his untimely death through war conflict at a young age, his legacy lives on through his works that continue to enthrall art enthusiasts globally today.