The National Museum of Western Art

update 25 March 2014

on display Permanent Collection

Pierre Bonnard [Fontenay-aux-Roses, 1867 - Le Cane, 1947]

Young Girl Sitting with a Rabbit

Date1891
Materials/Techniquesoil on canvas
Size (cm)96.5 x 43
InscriptionsSigned (P and B in monogram) and dated upper left: P Bonnard / 1891
Credit LinePurchased
Standard ref.Dauberville 24
CategoryPaintings
Collection NumberP.1987-0001

The Japonisme boom that spread among the artists and writers of the second half of the 19th century reflected the profound influence exerted by Ukiyo-e woodblock prints and other Japanese arts on the premier artists of the day. Bonnard, one of the central members of the Nabis group, was not excluded from this trend. He was given the apt nickname of "Le Nabi-japonard" by his contemporaries for his admiration for Japanese art. In fact, he owned numerous Ukiyo-e prints, including the works of Hiroshige, Toyokuni, Kunisada, and Kuniyoshi, and stated, "The walls of my room are inundated with these gaudy woodblock prints." For Bonnard, who discarded the traditional European expression of three-dimensional space and tended towards decorative, idealized flattened compositions, Japanese woodblock prints were the object of wonder. Young Girl Sitting with a Rabbit, painted in 1891, represents a turning point in Bonnard's early creative work. The decorative qualities characterizing his Nabis period are clearly visible here, such as the vertical composition, the S-shaped curve of the girl's form, the decorative forms and the two dimensional spatial composition. All of these elements reflect the strong influence of Japanese art. (Source: Masterpieces of the National Museum of Western Art, Tokyo, 2009, cat. no.109)

Provenance

Arsène Alexandre, Paris; Auc. Arsène Alexandre, Galerie Georges Petit, Paris, 18 May 1903, no. 4; Pierre Bonnard (acquired at the above sale); Elie Faure, Paris; Galerie Bernheim-Jeune, Paris, 1912; Auc., Hôtel Drouot, Paris, 9 February 1925, no. 7; Félix Fénéon, Paris; Auc. Félix Fénéon, Hôtel Drouot Paris, 3 December 1941, no. 33; Albert Kleinmann; E. & A. Silbermann Galleries, New York; William S. Rubin, New York; Richard L. Feign Gallery, Chicago; Auc., Sotheby's, New York, 11 November 1987, no. 36; Seibu Pisa, Tokyo, by which sold to the NMWA, 1988.

Exhibition History

1891
Saint-Gernan-en-Laye, 1891 - 1891
1893
Ambroise Vollard, Paris, 1893 - 1893
1924
Tableaux de Pierre Bonnard de 1891à 1922, Galerie Druet, Paris, 1924 - 1924, cat. no. 2
1928
Bonnard, Vuillard, Roussel, Modigliani, Lyon, 1928 - 1928, cat. no. 1, pl. 1
1933
Portaits de Pierre Bonnard, Galerie Braun, Paris, 1933 - 1933, cat. no. 1, repr.
1956
Visionaries and Dreamers, Corcoran Gallery, Washignton D. C., 1956 - 1956, cat. no. 10, repr.
1964
Bonnard and his Environment, Museum of Modern Art, New York, 1964 - 1964, Los Angels; The Art Institute, Chicago, Los Angels; The Art Institute, Chicago, cat. no. 1, col. repr.
1981
St- Germain-en Laye, 1981 - 1981
1988
Le Japonisme, Galeries nationales du Grand Palais, Paris; The National Museum of Western Art, Tokyo, 23 September 1988 - 11 December 1988, cat. no. 269, repr.
1988
Le Japonisme, Galerie nationales du Grand Pallais, Paris, 17 May 1988 - 15 August 1988, cat. no. 269, col. repr.
1989
The French Modern Painting, from the National Museum of Western Art, Tokyo, Miyakonojo, 15 April 1989 - 14 May 1989, cat. no. 16, col. repr.
1990
[Tour Exhibition] The French Modern Art, from the National Museum of Western Art, Tokyo, Ibara Municipal Denchu Art Museum, 10 April 1990 - 23 April 1990, cat. no. 17, col. repr.
1990
[Tour Exhibition] The French Modern Art, from the National Museum of Western Art, Tokyo, The Cultural Center of Kagawa Prefecture, Takamatsu, 28 April 1990 - 13 May 1990, cat. no. 17, col. repr.
1990
[Tour Exhibition] The French Modern Art, from the National Museum of Western Art, Tokyo, The Cultural Center of Toyota City, 19 May 1990 - 3 June 1990, cat. no. 17
1991
[Tour Exhibition] The French Modern Art, from the National Museum of Western Art, Tokyo, The Hachinohe City Museum of Art, 28 September 1991 - 27 October 1991, cat. no. 17
1993
Nabis: 1888-1900, Zurich, Kunsthaus, 28 May 1993 - 15 August 1993, cat. no. 5, repr. color., Paris, Galeries nationales du Grand Palais, 21 September 1993 - 3 January 1994
1996
The Crossing Visions: European and Modern Japanese Art from the Collections of The National Museum of Western Art & The National Museum of Modern Art, Tokyo, National Museum of Modern Art, Tokyo, 20 July 1996 - 8 September 1996, cat. no. 47
1997
Pierre Bonnard Exhibition, Aichi Prefectural Museum of Art, 28 March 1997 - 18 May 1997, The Bunkamura Museum of Art, 24 May-21 July, cat. no. 5, col. repr.
2000
Tanka at the National Museum of Western Art: An Encounter between Poet and Art, National Museum of Western Art, Tokyo, 25 July 2000 - 29 October 2000, cat. no. 49
2007
Cézanne to Picasso: Ambroise Vollard, patron of the avant-garde, the Art Institute of Chicago, 17 February 2007 - 13 May 2007, cat. no. 4, col. repr. ; Musée d'Orsay, Paris, 19 June-16 September 2007(as "De Cézanne à Picasso. Chefs-d'oeuvre de la galerie Vollard"), cat. no. 7, fig. 102, repr.
2012
[Traveling Exhibitions presenting National Art Museum Collections, Fiscal 2012] Modern European Art: From the Collection of the National Museum of Western Art, Ibara Municipal Denchu Art Museum (Okayama), 5 October 2012 - 25 November 2012, 18

Bibliography

1919
Fosca, François. Bonnard. Genève, 1919, pl. II.
1921
Klingsor, Tristan. Bonnard. L'Amour de l'Art. vol. 2, no. 8, Aug., 1921, p. 243.
1922
Coquiot, Gustave. Bonnard. Paris. 1922, pp. 21, 58.
1923
Werth, Léon. Bonnard. Paris, 1923, pl. 1.
1933
Bulletin des Expositions. Paris, no. 4, 1933, pl. 15.
1939
Special topic section, Bonnard. Le Point: Revue artistique et littéraire. no. 24, 1939, [p.8,] repr.
1941
Annuaire Général des Ventes Publiques en France. vol. 1, 1941-42, no. 414.
1952
Rumpel, Heinrich. Bonnard. Bern, 1952, pp. 11, 14-15, pl. 2.
1953
Art News. vol. 52, no. 1, March, 1953, p. 12, repr.
1958
Sammlung Emil G. Bührle: Festschrift zu Ehren von Emil G. Bührle zur Eröffnung des Kunsthaus-Neubaus und Katalog der Sammlung Emil G. Bührle. Kunsthaus Zürich, 7. Juni - Ende September 1958, p. 145, no. 257 (cited in literature).
1958
Martini, Alberto. Gli inizi difficili di Pierre Bonnard. Arte Antica e Moderna. no. 3, July-Sept, 1958, p. 261, pl. 96b.
1965
Dauberville, Jean and Henry. Bonnard: Catalogue raisonné de l'œuvre peint. vol. 1 (1888-1905), Paris, 1965, p. 100, no. 24, repr.
1967
Terrasse, Antoine. Pierre Bonnard. Paris, 1967, pp. 26, 28, repr.
1969
Fermigier, André. Pierre Bonnard. Tokyo, 1969, pp. 12, repr. (Japanese)
1969
Fermigier, André. Pierre Bonnard. New York, 1969, pp. 12, 18, repr.
1976
Perucchi-Petri, Ursula. Die Nabis und Japan: Das Frühwerk von Bonnard, Vuillard und Denis. München, 1976, p. 47, fig. 10.
1984
Fermigier, André. Pierre Bonnard. Concise ed., New York, 1984, pp. 10, 16, repr.
1989
Masterpieces of the National Museum of Western Art, Tokyo. Tokyo, The National Museum of Western Art, 1989 (Japanese, preface in Japanese and English), no. 98, repr.
1990
Catalogue of painting acquisitions: 1979-1989. Tokyo, The National Museum of Western Art, 1990, pp. 16-18, repr.
1990
Mayekawa, Seiro. Japonismus: Kunst der >Kristallisation<. Blik nach Westen: Die Aufsätze und Vorträge in Deutscher Sprache.(Nürnberg). 1990, pp. 91-92, repr.
1990
Annual bulletin of the National Museum of Western Art. Nos. 21-22 (1986-87), 1990, Takahashi, Akiya. New Acquisitions 1986-87. pp. 14-15, Catalogue of the New Acquisitions 1986-87. pp. 30-32, repr.
2013
Masterpieces: The National Museum of Western Art, Tokyo. Tokyo, The Western Art Foundation, 2013 (Japanese, preface in Japanese and English), no. 109, col. repr.

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