Noonday Rest (1877) by Rosa Bonheur

Noonday Rest - Rosa Bonheur - 1877

Artwork Information

TitleNoonday Rest
ArtistRosa Bonheur
Art MovementRealism

About Noonday Rest

The artwork “Noonday Rest” is a quintessential example of Rosa Bonheur’s mastery in the realm of animal painting. Created in the year 1877, this piece exemplifies the Realism art movement, capturing the pastoral serenity of a bucolic midday scene with striking verisimilitude.

The composition of “Noonday Rest” invites the viewer into a tranquil landscape under the gentle shelter of a tree, providing respite from the midday sun. The focal point of the piece is a group of livestock—cattle and a robust horse—that embody a sense of calm repose. The livestock is portrayed with meticulous attention to anatomical detail and texture, from the glossy coat of the horse to the soft hide of the cows. Their relaxed postures and the dappled sunlight cast through the leaves create an atmosphere of idyllic peace.

Around these main figures, the pasture stretches into the distance, dotted with additional cattle that further contribute to the pastoral narrative. The artist’s use of light and shadow adeptly conveys the time of day, casting long shadows and enhancing the depth of the scene. The lush greens of the grass and the foliage are rendered with various shades and tones, lending the artwork a vibrant yet soothing quality.

In the foreground, the artist has carefully depicted the grass, with individual blades discernible, leading to a middle ground where the tree stands as a protective sentinel over its resting charges. The background slowly fades into soft, distant hills, suggesting the expanse of the pastoral landscape beyond the immediate vicinity. The sky above is bright and partly cloudy, hinting at the fleeting nature of the perfect moment captured in this peaceful reprieve.

Other Artwork from Rosa Bonheur

More Realism Artwork

Scroll to Top