Art/ Collection/ Collection/ Art Object

The Dressing Room

Artist:
Pierre Bonnard (French, Fontenay-aux-Roses 1867–1947 Le Cannet)
Date:
1914
Medium:
Oil on canvas
Dimensions:
28 3/8 x 34 3/4 in. (72.1 x 88.3 cm)
Classification:
Paintings
Credit Line:
Bequest of Scofield Thayer, 1982
Accession Number:
1984.433.3
Rights and Reproduction:
© 2016 Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York
On view at The Met Fifth Avenue in Gallery 828
Bonnard delighted in portraying scenes of domesticity, everyday events that take place mostly in dining rooms and in the bath. This picture presents a casual view into the corner of a dressing room in the artist’s house at Saint-Germain-en-Laye, near Paris, where he lived during World War I. Space and light seem to be created by the two mirrors hanging on the walls, the vertical one on the right and a horizontal one that reflects a seated woman holding a white cloth and her curled-up, sleeping dog. She is probably Marthe (Maria Boursin, 1869-1942), Bonnard's companion and, after 1925, his wife.
Inscription: Signed and dated (upper left): Bonnard/ 1914
[Bernheim-Jeune, Paris, until ca. 1923]; Scofield Thayer, New York (ca. 1923–d. 1982; on extended loan to the Worcester Art Museum, Worcester, Mass., as part of the Dial Collection, 1936–82; his bequest to MMA)

Venice. Biennale. "XIII Esposizione internazionale d'arte," April–October 1922, no. 113 (as "Stanzino da 'toilette'") [probably this picture].

New York. Montross Gallery. "Original Paintings, Drawings, and Engravings being Exhibited with the Dial Folio 'Living Art'," January 26–February 14, 1924, unnum. checklist (as "Dressing Room").

Worcester Art Museum. "Exhibition of the Dial Collection of Paintings, Engravings, and Drawings by Contemporary Artists," March 5–30, 1924, no. 1 (as "Dressing Room").

Northampton, Mass. Hillyer Art Gallery, Smith College. "The Dial Collection," Spring 1924, no catalogue.

Worcester Art Museum. "The Dial and the Dial Collection," April 30–September 8, 1959, no. 4 (as "Dressing Room").

Worcester Art Museum. "Selections from the Dial Collection," November 13–30, 1965, unnum. checklist (as "Dressing Room").

Worcester Art Museum. "'The Dial': Arts and Letters in the 1920s," March 7–May 10, 1981, no. 8 (as "Dressing Room").

New York. The Metropolitan Museum of Art. "Selection Two: Twentieth-Century Art," June 4–September 2, 1985, no catalogue.

Canberra. Australian National Gallery. "20th Century Masters from The Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York," March 1–April 27, 1986, unnumbered cat. (p. 27; as "The dressing room").

Brisbane. Queensland Art Gallery. "20th Century Masters from The Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York," May 7–July 1, 1986, unnumbered cat.

Humlebaek. Louisiana Museum. "Pierre Bonnard," September 11, 1992–January 10, 1993, no. 38 (as "La Toilette").

Düsseldorf. Kunstsammlung Nordrhein-Westfalen. "Pierre Bonnard: Das Glück zu malen," January 23–April 12, 1993, no. 17 (as "La toilette").

Munich. Kunsthalle der Hypo-Kulturstiftung. "Bonnard," January 28–April 24, 1994, no. 67 (as "La toilette").

New York. The Metropolitan Museum of Art. "Painters in Paris: 1895–1950," March 8–December 31, 2000, extended to January 14, 2001, unnumbered cat. (p. 79).

Kyoto Municipal Museum of Art. "Picasso and the School of Paris: Paintings from The Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York," September 14–November 24, 2002, no. 30.

Tokyo. Bunkamura Museum of Art. "Picasso and the School of Paris: Paintings from The Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York," December 7, 2002–March 9, 2003, no. 30.

Museum of Fine Arts, Houston. "The Masterpieces of French Painting from The Metropolitan Museum of Art: 1800–1920," February 4–May 6, 2007, no. 122.

Berlin. Neue Nationalgalerie. "Französische Meisterwerke des 19. Jahrhunderts aus dem Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York," June 1–October 7, 2007, unnumbered cat. (p. 243; as "Die Toilette").

"Originals of the Dial Folio of Living Art at Montross." Brooklyn Daily Eagle (February 3, 1924), p. 26.

Dial 80 (March 1926), ill. before p. 179 (color), as "Interior".

Louisa Dresser in The Dial and the Dial Collection. Exh. cat., Worcester Art Museum. Worcester, Mass., 1959, pp. 58–59, no. 4, ill.

Nicholas Joost. Scofield Thayer and The Dial: An Illustrated History. Carbondale, Ill., 1964, ill. between pp. 268 and 269.

Jean and Henry Dauberville. Bonnard: Catalogue raisonné de l'œuvre peint. Vol. 2, 1906–1919. Paris, 1968, p. 343, no. 811, ill., as "La Toilette".

Nicholas Joost. "The Dial Collection: Tastes and Trends of the 'Twenties." Apollo 94 (December 1971), p. 488.

Michael Brenson. "Met Museum Given Major Private Collection." New York Times (August 25, 1982), p. A1.

Lisa M. Messinger in "Twentieth Century Art." The Metropolitan Museum of Art: Notable Acquisitions, 1984–1985. New York, 1985, pp. 44–45, ill. (color), identifies Marthe, Bonnard's future wife, as probably the woman reflected in the mirror; notes that Bonnard painted several similar compositions from 1907 to 1915.

Terence Measham in 20th Century Masters from The Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York. Exh. cat., Australian National Gallery. Canberra, 1986, p. 27, ill. (color).

Kay Larson. "The Met Goes Modern: Bill Lieberman's Brave New Wing." New York Magazine 19 (December 15, 1986), p. 46.

Anette Kruszynski in Pierre Bonnard: Das Glück zu malen. Exh. cat., Kunstsammlung Nordrhein-Westfalen. Düsseldorf, 1993, pp. 38–39.

Ulrich Krempel in Pierre Bonnard: Das Glück zu malen. Exh. cat., Kunstsammlung Nordrhein-Westfalen. Düsseldorf, 1993, pp. 156, 181, no. 17, ill. p. 158 (color).

Albert Kostenevich. Bonnard and the Nabis from the Collections of Russian Museums. Bournemouth, England, 1996, pp. 47, 65, calls it "The Toilette" and "The Dressing Room"; erroneously locates it still in the Worcester Art Museum.

Hidenori Kurita in Pierre Bonnard. Ed. Hidenori Kurita et al. Exh. cat., Aichi Prefectural Museum of Art. Nagoya, 1997, p. 249, under no. 76, ill. p. 178, calls it "Dressing Room"; notes its similarity to "Interior" (1913; Sotheby's, New York, November 5, 2003, no. 19; D755).

Charlotte Eyerman in Old Masters, Impressionists, and Moderns: French Masterworks from the State Pushkin Museum, Moscow. Exh. cat., Museum of Fine Arts, Houston. New Haven, 2002, p. 196 n. 4.

Impressionist & Modern Art. Part One. Sotheby's, New York. November 5, 2003, p. 66, under no. 19, call it "Cabinet de toilette"; identify this scene and that of "Interior" (1913; D755) as the bedroom of Bonnard's villa, "Ma Roulotte," near Vernonnet.

Sabine Rewald in The Masterpieces of French Painting from The Metropolitan Museum of Art: 1800–1920. Exh. cat., Museum of Fine Arts, Houston. New York, 2007, pp. 164, 181, no. 122, ill. (color and bw), identifies this scene as a dressing room in Bonnard's house at Saint-Germain-en-Laye, near Paris, where he lived during World War I, and the figure in the mirror as probably Marthe.

Sabine Rewald in Masterpieces of European Painting, 1800–1920, in The Metropolitan Museum of Art. New York, 2007, pp. 194, 214–15, no. 179, ill. (color and bw).

Marina Ferretti-Bocquillon in Bonnard en Normandie. Exh. cat., Musée des Impressionnismes Giverny. Paris, 2011, p. 12, fig. 3 (color), calls it "La Toilette".

Marina Ferretti-Bocquillon in Pierre Bonnard. Ed. Ulf Küster. Exh. cat., Fondation Beyeler. Basel, 2012, p. 116, fig. 5 (color), calls it "La Toilette".



A similar painting of this dressing table, from a different angle (1913; D755) was sold at Sotheby's, New York, November 5, 2003, no. 19. Another, closer view of the dressing table, also from 1913, is in the Museum of Fine Arts, Houston (D772).
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