Lot 8
  • 8

Pierre-Auguste Renoir

1,800,000 - 2,500,000 USD
bidding is closed


  • Pierre-Auguste Renoir
  • Jeune fille au panier (Gabrielle au jardin)
  • Signed Renoir (lower right)
  • Oil on canvas
  • 25 7/8 by 21 1/8 in.
  • 65.8 by 53.5 cm


Durand-Ruel, Ambroise Vollard & Bernheim-Jeune, Paris (acquired jointly from the artist on July 31, 1917)

Bernheim-Jeune & Ambroise Vollard, Paris (acquired in total from Durand-Ruel on November 13, 1917)

Ambroise Vollard, Paris (1933)

M. Knoedler & Co., New York

Aline Barnsdall, Beverly Hills

Stephen Hahn, Inc., New York

Acquired from the above in 1978


New York, M. Knoedler & Co., Paintings from the Ambroise Vollard Collection,1933, no. 39 (titled La Paysanne au corsage rouge and as dating from 1910)

Los Angeles County Museum of Art (on loan)


Ambroise Vollard, La Vie et l'oeuvre de Pierre-Auguste Renoir, Paris 1919, illustrated opposite p. 174 (titled Femme au Panier)

Catalogue Note

Although it has been catalogued with various titles, this painting is understood to be a depiction of the young Gabrielle Renand (1878-1959), the artist's housemaid and governess to his children.  Gabrielle was Renoir's favorite model when this work was painted in 1910, according to Vollard, and the dark-haired woman here bears a strong resemblance to her.  At first, the artist featured Gabrielle in several group portraits with his sons Jean and Coco, but as her relationship with the family became closer, she began posing for Renoir in the nude.  A distant relative of the artist’s wife Aline, Gabrielle joined the Renoir household in 1894, shortly before the birth of Jean in September of that year, and left in 1914, around the time she was to marry the American painter Conrad Slade.  Her departure was partly influenced by the deteriorating relationship between herself and Madame Renoir, who objected to the artist’s increasing attention towards his young model.

Renoir’s son Jean, who often sat for his father together with Gabrielle, later in his life recalled that the painter shied away from demonstrating his emotions in front of the family, but that his affection for Gabrielle was undoubtedly reflected in his paintings.  “Certainly, comparing Renoir’s portrayal of Gabrielle with photographs of her from around the same time [fig. 2], it is clear that he has softened her rather coarse features” (Renoir’s Portraits: Impressions of an Age (exhibition catalogue), National Gallery of Canada, Ottawa, 1997, p. 226). In Jeune fille au panier , positioning Gabrielle amidst an abundance of flowers was yet another means for Renoir to flatter his model.  Renoir associated the suppleness and fullness of flowers in bloom with the physical beauty of women, and also used flowers as a formal device that highlighted the tones of the model’s flesh. 

According to the Durand-Ruel archives, the dealers Durand-Ruel, Bernheim-Jeune and Ambroise Vollard jointly purchased this picture in the midst of the war in 1917.  It was eventually acquired by Vollard himself, and the legendary dealer kept this work in his private collection.  Given that it was sent to New York in November 1933 for exhibition at Knoedler Galleries, one might presume that it was sold shortly thereafter, possibly to the California collector and patron of the arts Aline Barnsdall, whose name appears on the reverse of the picture.  In the catalogue for the Knoedler exhibition,  Dr. Albert Barnes, the ambitious American collector, noted the importance of Vollard's choices for personal acquisition, including the present work:  "The particular significance of the present exhibition is that it enables the public to see not only what Vollard saw many years ago but what, from his enormous stock of pictures, by the great painters of the past generation, he selected and maintained as an ensemble for his own aesthetic satisfaction."   (Introduction to the Knoedler Galleries exhibition of Vollard's collection in November-December, 1933).