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  • Saying Grace (Le Beneoicite)

    Artist:
    Chardin, Jean-Simeon. 1699-1779
    Technique:
    oil
    Dimensions:
    49,5x38,4 cm

Chardin, Jean-Simeon. 1699-1779

Saying Grace (Le Beneoicite)

France, 1744

Chardin was the first to introduce the themes of the family, motherhood and housework to French 18th-century art. The heroes of Saying Grace belong to the Third Estate, that class of craftsmen and small traders with whose way of life Chardin was most familiar. The action centres on the table where a young mother is dishing out soup and seeking to make her two daughters repeat the words of a lunchtime prayer. Composed with great care, the painting seeks to portray the artist's ideal of the closely-knit family, of their caring attitude towards each other. He produced a warm and touching image in the younger daughter, capturing the feelings of the child who does not as yet fully comprehend the meaning of the words, making it one of the best images of children Chardin ever created. The artist spent many years seeking the exact composition which would embody his ideal and there are paintings on the theme of saying grace in both Paris and Stockholm, but only the Hermitage canvas is signed and dated, suggesting that it was this work to which the artist attached greatest importance.

Title:

Saying Grace (Le Beneoicite)

Place:

Date:

Material:

Technique:

oil

Dimensions:

49,5x38,4 cm

Acquisition date:

Entered the Hermitage between 1763 and 1774

Inventory Number:

ГЭ-1193

Category:

Collection:

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