The Dream (1910) by Henri Rousseau

The Dream - Henri Rousseau - 1910

All Artwork Images

Artwork Information

TitleThe Dream
ArtistHenri Rousseau
MediumOil on Canvas
Dimensions298.5 x 204.5 cm
Art MovementNaïve Art (Primitivism)
Current LocationMuseum of Modern Art (MoMA), New York City, NY, US

About The Dream

Henri Rousseau’s “The Dream,” created in 1910, is a notable work of the Naïve Art movement, particularly Primitivism. This oil on canvas measures an impressive 298.5 by 204.5 cm and can be classified as an allegorical painting. The artwork is housed in the Museum of Modern Art (MoMA) in New York City, NY, USA, where it stands as a testament to Rousseau’s unique artistic vision and contribution to the world of art.

The artwork depicts an almost surreal, exotic jungle scene rich with dense, vibrant vegetation. At the center, a nude woman reclines on a sofa that appears incongruously placed amidst the lush flora. Her relaxed pose and dreamy expression suggest a state of reverie or contemplation, and her gesture with one arm extended outwards seems to invite the viewer into the scene or to be indicating something within the dreamlike tableau. Surrounding her are oversized, fantastical plants with large, colorful blossoms, a variety of thick foliage, and several wild animals. Notably, there are creatures like lions peering through the undergrowth with an air of curiosity rather than aggression, and a mysterious flute player barely visible beyond the green leaves, the presence of such a figure adding to the enigmatic atmosphere. The color palette is rich in greens and blues, punctuated by touches of vibrant colors such as the reds and yellows of the fruits and the floral hues.

“The Dream” is distinctive for its imaginative composition and the way it merges the real with the fantastical, capturing a sense of wonderment that defies conventional interpretation. Henri Rousseau’s deliberate, detailed technique and flat, almost childlike portrayal of the fantastical scene defy the more realistic styles of his contemporaries, placing the work firmly within the Naïve Art genre.

Other Artwork from Henri Rousseau

More Naïve Art (Primitivism) Artwork

Scroll to Top