About This Artwork

Pierre-Auguste Renoir
French, 1841–1919

Fruits of the Midi, 1881

Oil on canvas
51 x 65 cm (20 1/16 x 25 5/8 in.)

Mr. and Mrs. Martin A. Ryerson Collection, 1933.1176

Pierre-Auguste Renoir probably painted this unpretentious still life of peppers, eggplants, tomatoes, pomegranates, citrons, lemons, and oranges while traveling along the Mediterranean coast (known as the Midi) on his way to Italy. In this work, the artist stressed the three-dimensional physicality of his fruits and vegetables by emphasizing their contours and using long, diagonal brushstrokes. Fruits of the Midi represents a significant attempt on his part to bring a classical sense of pictorial structure and balance to the fleeting luminosity of Impressionism—a goal that was pursued even more avidly by Paul Cézanne, with whom Renoir shared some fundamental aims.

— Permanent collection label

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