Lot 54
  • 54

Charles Amable Lenoir

80,000 - 120,000 USD
150,000 USD
bidding is closed


  • Charles Amable Lenoir
  • Young Girl with Cherries
  • signed c.a. Lenoir and dated 1900 (lower right)
  • oil on canvas


MacConnal-Mason, London
Acquired from the above, 1983

Catalogue Note

Charles-Amable Lenoir became a star pupil of William Bouguereau’s at the Académie Julian in 1882, a year after he had enrolled in the École des Beaux Arts. While many other artists passed through the artist’s atelier — including Lovis Corinth (see lot 20), Robert Henri and Henri Matisse — few remained as faithful to their master’s teachings, as evidenced in the present work. Louis Tider-Toutant, a close friend of both artists and curator of the Museum of Fine Arts in Niort, explains:

In Bouguereau’s studio I became acquainted with his principal pupils, who were already successful painters. Among them I met one whom I had known as a child, in Fouras, and with whom I soon established a bond; I am speaking of my friend Charles Lenoir. He was the son of a customs official. He had embraced an artistic career after teaching primary school, and then as a supervisor of studies at the lycée in Rochefot.

Having had the tenacity and patience to save up several thousand francs from his modest income, he had decided to try his luck, and after severe privations and many vicissitudes he was able, thanks to his stubborn application and exceptional gifts, to carry off the highest rewards in the career, including even a Second Grand Prix de Rome.

After attracting attention by his genre paintings, which, at the age of 40 still had not made him fashionable, Lenoir set to work to ‘paint Bouguereaus,’ successfully earning an income for himself, while excelling in portrait painting.”

(La Gazette d’Aunis, November 26, 1934, as quoted in Damien Bartoli and Frederick Ross, William Bouguereau, his life and works, New York, 2010, p. 482).

In the same spirit as Bouguereau’s most cherished paintings, Lenoir’s portrayal of a young peasant girl, far removed from the realities of an increasingly industrialized France, is a virtuoso example of French Academic painting.