Le Jardin de Paris by Pierre Bonnard

  • Monumental in scale, Post-Impressionist Pierre Bonnard captures the glamour of Belle Époque Paris
  • The painter captures the interior of Le Jardin de Paris, a bustling cafe-concert
  • Reflecting Bonnard’s interest in the dynamism of modern life, each figure's posh fashion is captured
  • Purchased by esteemed art dealer Ambroise Vollard, this oil is a masterpiece of Bonnard's oeuvre
  • Get complete item description here
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Pierre Bonnard
1867-1947 | French

Le Jardin de Paris

Signed and dated "Bonnard 1902" (bottom left)
Oil on canvas

Entitled Le Jardin de Paris, Pierre Bonnard's oil on canvas captures posh Parisians at the turn of the century on display. Capturing the spirit of his time, Bonnard presents here an inventive Parisian scene showing the bustling interior of one of the most prominent music halls of the 1900s — Le Jardin, founded by the same businessmen that founded the Moulin Rouge. Socialites don bowler caps and ostrich plumes as they drink and mingle; a celebration of Paris's vibrant social scene, Bonnard takes care to detail the partygoers' bourgeois fashions of the Belle Époque. In its extreme perspective, the painting’s cast of characters is captured with a remarkable sense of movement, reflecting Bonnard’s fascination with the energy and dynamism of modern life.

Pierre Bonnard studied art at the Académie Julian, where he met Vuillard and Maurice Denis — together, they would form the influential Les Nabis artistic movement, a group that emphasized the use of color. Though he eschewed the mysticism of the Symbolists, his works similarly recall the flattened, decorative surface of Japanese prints, and his eye for aesthetics was entirely avant-garde for his age. Bonnard was admired by many and formed friendships with art history greats, including Henri Matisse and Henri de Toulouse-Lautrec.

At nearly 4 feet high and 6 feet wide, Le Jardin de Paris is a monumental work for the artist. Clearly a favorite, this painting was personally acquired by legendary art dealer Ambroise Vollard in 1902, who championed Bonnard for the rest of his career, even organizing the artist’s first solo exhibition in 1906. Le Jardin de Paris debuted at the historic Salon d’Automne in 1904 to critical acclaim and has since been featured in over a dozen exhibitions and books on the artist. The artwork is included as no. 135 in the artist’s catalogue raisonné. 

Today, Bonnard is a recognized master of the Post-Impressionist movement. His works grace the collection of major museums around the world, including the Metropolitan Museum of Art, the Tate Modern, the Musée d’Orsay, MoMA and the Art Institute of Chicago, among others.

Painted 1896-1902

Canvas: 46 5/8" high x 74 5/8" wide
Frame: 57 3/8" high x 85 5/8" wide x 2" deep

Ambroise Vollard, Paris (acquired directly from the artist in 1902)
Private collection, France (by descent from the above)
Private collection, (from the above)
M.S. Rau, New Orleans

Paris, Salon d’Automne, 1904, no. 114 as Promenoir de café-concert (belongs to Ambroise Vollard)
Paris, Musée du Luxembourg, 1931, room 4, panel 7 as Le Promenoir (belongs to Ambroise Vollard)
Paris, Galerie Charpentier, Cents chefs d’œuvre des peintres de l’École de Paris, 1946, cat, n° 3 as Promenoir de music-hall.New Orleans, M.S. Rau, Revolutionaries: The Impressionists and Post-Impressionists, October 2022 – January 2023.

Société du Salon d’Automne, Catalogue de Peintures, dessin, sculpture, gravure, architecture et arts, décoratifs exposés au Grand Palais des Champs-Elysées, Evreux, Charles Hérissey imprimeur, 1904, p. 23. (as Le Promenoir de café-concert, belongs to Ambroise Vollard)
Roger Marx, Le Vernissage du Salon d’Automne, in La Chronique des arts et de la curiosité : supplément à la Gazette des beaux-arts, Paris, 22 octobre 1904, p. 271 (as Le Promenoir de Café-concert)
Raymond Bouyer, Exposition et Concours, in Le Bulletin des Musées de France, n° 297, Paris, 14 April 1906, p. 118 (as Le Promenoir de café-concert)
Musée National du Luxembourg, Catalogue-guide : Peintures, Mars 1929, Paris, Musées Nationaux, 1929, p. 31 (as Le Promenoir, belongs to Ambroise Vollard)
Robert Rey, Le Nouveau Musée du Luxembourg, in Bulletin des Musées de France, n° 3, Paris, March 1929, p. 44 (as Le Promenoir)
André Dezarrois, Actualités : Un Événement, in La Revue de l’Art Ancien et Moderne, 1929, p. 149, illustrated (as Le Promenoir)
Germain Bazin, Bonnard : les Nabis, in L’Amour de l’Art, n° 4, April 1933, p. 85, fig. 87, illustrated (as Le Café-Concert)
Jean Duché, L’Amour à Paris en 1946, in Formes et couleurs, n° 2, Paris, 1946, illustrated (as Promenoir de music-hall)
Raymond Cogniat, Orientations de la peinture française de David à Picasso, Nice, La Diane française, 1950, p. 82 (as Promenoir de Music-Hall)
Florent Fels, L’Art vivant de 1900 à nos jours, Geneva, Pierre Cailler Éditeur, 1950, illustrated (as Le Jardin de Paris, dated 1896)
Thadée Natanson, Le Bonnard que je propose, Geneva, Pierre Cailler Éditeur, 1951, fig. 15, illustrated. (as Le Jardin de Paris, dated 1896)
Jean et Henry Dauberville, Bonnard, Catalogue raisonné de l’œuvre peint, Paris, Éditions Bernheim- Jeune, 1992, volume I, p. 174, cat., n°. 135, illustrated (as Le Jardin de Paris, dated 1896)
Michel Terrasse, Bonnard du dessin au tableau, Paris, Imprimerie nationale, 1996, p. 44-45, illustrated (as Le Jardin de Paris, dated 1896).
Le Jardin de Paris by Pierre Bonnard
Period: 1816-1918
Origin: France
Type: Paintings
Depth: 2.0 Inches
Width: 85.63 Inches
Height: 57.38 Inches
Style: Post-Impressionism
Canvas Width: 74.625 Inches
Canvas Height: 46.625 Inches
Le Jardin de Paris by Pierre Bonnard
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