Quick Facts: Renoir's Acrobats at the Cirque Fernando (Francisca and Angelina Wartenberg)
Quick facts about this painting of two circus girls.
CD: With Open Eyes
Art Institute of Chicago. With Open Eyes: Images from The Art Institute of Chicago. CD-ROM. New York: Voyager, 1994.
The audience has rewarded these two circus girls by tossing them oranges, a luxury in the nineteenth century. How do you show approval of a performance? The little acrobats were daughters of the owner of the famed Circus Fernando in Paris. The sister who holds the oranges wrote later that she was the "greedy one." What is the other sister doing? Although this scene is so natural it looks as if Renoir had painted it on the spot, the artist completed it in his studio where the circus girls also posed for him.