Young Woman and Child at the Well (1882) by Camille Pissarro

Young Woman and Child at the Well - Camille Pissarro - 1882

Artwork Information

TitleYoung Woman and Child at the Well
ArtistCamille Pissarro
Dimensions81.5 x 66.4 cm
Art MovementImpressionism
Current LocationArt Institute of Chicago, Chicago, IL, US

About Young Woman and Child at the Well

The artwork titled “Young Woman and Child at the Well” was created by Camille Pissarro in 1882. It is an oil painting on canvas measuring 81.5 x 66.4 cm and is currently housed at the Art Institute of Chicago in Chicago, Illinois, USA. The piece is a quintessential example of the Impressionist movement, to which Pissarro made significant contributions. Notably, this painting falls within the genre of portraiture.

The artwork portrays two figures, a young woman and a child, presumably standing by a well. The woman is seated, her posture relaxed yet attentive, while the child stands beside her, facing the woman, creating a sense of interaction between the pair. The woman’s gaze seems to extend thoughtfully into the distance, suggesting a moment of contemplation or rest. In the hands of the woman is a water vessel, presumably used for drawing water from the well, reinforcing the narrative of daily rural life.

Both the woman and child are dressed in attire typical of the rural working class of the era, with the woman donned in a long-sleeved blouse and a long skirt, and the child in a simple, long coat. The fabric of their clothing is rendered with a series of quick, visible brushstrokes, characteristic of Impressionist paintings, successfully capturing the play of light on their garments.

The background offers a lush scene of a garden or farmland, with houses in the distance that lend a sense of community to the scene. Pissarro’s masterful use of color and light infuses the painting with vibrancy, while also achieving a sense of harmony and peacefulness within the rural setting. The integration of people with their environment is a common theme in Pissarro’s work, reflecting both his interest in the lives of ordinary people and the landscapes they inhabit. Overall, the painting stands as a testament to Pissarro’s fascination with the simple, yet meaningful aspects of rustic life, depicted through his distinctive Impressionist style.

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