Toward the end of his life, Ribot, who was strongly influenced by seventeenth-century Spanish painters, especially Ribera, brought a vigorous realism and a predilection for contrasting values to the subject of Breton and Norman peasants. Beginning in the 1870s, he painted several group portraits similar to this one.
Inscription: Signed (lower left): t Ribot.
Ernest Cronier, Paris (until d. 1905; his estate sale, Galerie Georges Petit, Paris, December 4–5, 1905, no. 66, as "Les Pêcheurs bretons"); Mrs. Edward Spencer (Catherine D.) Wentworth, Paris, later Santa Barbara, Calif. (by 1937–d. 1948)
New York. The Metropolitan Museum of Art. "Van Gogh as Critic and Self-Critic," October 30, 1973–January 6, 1974, no. 32 (as "Breton Fishermen").
New York. The Metropolitan Museum of Art. "Family Life," March 15–May 19, 2002, no catalogue.
New York. The Metropolitan Museum of Art. "Street," March 5–May 27, 2013, no catalogue.
Charles Sterling and Margaretta M. Salinger. French Paintings: A Catalogue of the Collection of The Metropolitan Museum of Art. Vol. 2, XIX Century. New York, 1966, p. 138, ill., call it "Breton Fishermen" and state that it must have been painted at either Brest or Trouville after 1880; note the influence of Ribera.
Charles S. Moffett. Van Gogh as Critic and Self-Critic. Exh. cat., The Metropolitan Museum of Art. New York, 1973, unpaginated, no. 32, dates it probably after 1880; describes it as depicting "the coarse reality of the peasants' world without a single passage of refined, academically correct painting".
Artist: Théodule-Augustin Ribot (French, Saint-Nicolas-d'Attez 1823–1891 Colombes)Date: ca. 1870–72Medium: Pen and black ink, brush and gray wash, with touches of red ink; heavy off-white wove paperAccession: 1994.228On view in:Not on view