Dining Room, Rue de Naples, Paris
French, 1868 - 1940
Vuillard painted domestic interiors throughout his career. As a student he was familiar with contemporary Impressionist examples, and he took a special interest in works by 17th-century Dutch and 18th-century French painters. In 1889 he banded with Paul Sérusier, Maurice Denis, and others in an avant-garde group called “Les Nabis” (The Prophets). Their goal was to make flat shapes the basis of a composition, calling attention to the interactions between expressive contours and arresting colors. Vuillard was sixty-six—and a respected establishment figure—when he painted this canvas. Dining Room, portraying the home of longtime family friends, exemplifies the style he had perfected in the 1910s: sensuous and gentle responses to color, light, and form, and a quiet testimonial to the private comforts of a prosperous life.
Oil on cardboard, 36 1/2 x 31 1/2 in. (92.7 x 80cm), Gift of Mr. and Mrs. Prentice Bloedel, 91.15, © Artist or Artist’s Estate
Provenance: The artist; collection of Jacques Lindon (?-2003), New York, until May 27, 1954; consigned to [M. Knoedler & Co., New York, stock no. CA4601, May 27, 1954-November 11, 1954]; sold to Virginia Merrill (Mrs. Prentice Bloedel, 1902-1989), Bainbridge Island, November 11, 1954-February 4, 1991; gift to Seattle Art Museum, February 4, 1991