The Frugal Meal by William-Adolphe Bouguereau

  • This exceptional oil is the work of the French Academic painter William-Adolphe Bouguereau
  • The work is a celebration of childhood innocence, appealing in both subject and execution
  • The oil on canvas boasts an unsurpassed degree of finish and luminous coloration
  • Paintings of young children such as this are among Bouguereau's finest compositions
  • Get complete item description here
Price available upon request Item No. 31-1315

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William-Adolphe Bouguereau
1825-1905 | French

The Frugal Meal

Signed and dated "W-Bouguereau-1898" (upper left)
Oil on canvas

This exceptional oil on canvas is the work of the French Academic painter William-Adolphe Bouguereau, an artist renowned for his sensitive portrayals of peasant girls. The Frugal Meal is a particularly fine example of his output. A celebration of childhood innocence, the work is appealing in both its subject matter and its masterful execution. Bouguereau was particularly skilled at capturing nuances of mood and atmosphere, and this work exemplifies his unique ability to replicate the softness and sincerity of his young subjects.

Masterfully composed in the Academic style, The Frugal Meal reveals the artist’s remarkable skills as a draftsman. A student of the great Neoclassical artist Jean-Auguste-Dominique Ingres, his painting technique boasts an unsurpassed degree of finish and luminous coloration, distinctive hallmarks of the French Academy. Faultlessly composed down to the smallest detail, his young model, posed in a simple dress while enjoying a simple meal, epitomizes the Academic ideals of pastoral innocence. Bouguereau’s handling of his young subject displays an especially unique sensitivity; his tender paintings of mothers, children and young girls are among his finest creations.

Bouguereau is unquestionably one of history's greatest artistic geniuses, and he became one of the most decorated artists of the 19th century. He received medals from the Salons and Universal Expositions, successive ranks in the prestigious Legion of Honor, and was the leading member of the Institute of France and President of the Society of Painters, Sculptors and Engravers. He so dominated the Salons of his era that the official Salon became affectionately known as ‘Le Salon Bouguereau.’

He never wavered from the Academic traditions of his teachers, and his conservative style made him immensely popular among the artistic establishment. Therefore, he enjoyed many prestigious commissions during his lifetime, such as an invitation to decorate public buildings including the Grand Théâtre in Bordeaux and Saint Augustin in Paris. Today, his works can be found in important collections around the world, including the Louvre (Paris), J. Paul Getty Museum (Los Angeles) and the Metropolitan Museum of Art (New York).

Dated 1898

Canvas: 35" high x 22 1/4" wide
Frame: 48 3/4" high x 35 1/4" wide
The Frugal Meal by William-Adolphe Bouguereau
Maker: Bouguereau, William Adolphe
Period: 1816-1918
Origin: France
Type: Paintings
Depth: 4.25 Inches
Width: 35.25 Inches
Height: 48.75 Inches
Style: Academic
Canvas Width: 22.25 Inches
Canvas Height: 35 Inches

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