Le bouquet de roses sur la fenêtre (The bouquet of roses on the window)

Creation date
oil on canvas
52-3/4 x 51-1/2 in.
Credit line
Gift of Joseph Cantor
Accession number
Currently On View In
Lawrence A. and Ann O'Connor, Jr. Gallery - H201

Balthus blended traditional painting techniques with an eerie, disquieting undertone that links him to Surrealists such as De Chirico (at left). Though best known for images of adolescent girls, he also painted landscapes, such as this view from his home in central France.

The bouquet, replaced in other versions by a female figure, provides a sense of volume and rounded form before the vista plunges into the sharp angularity of the terrain. The fields are lacerated by deep, contrasting shadows, while the gentle light seems at odds with the gritty texture of Balthus' brushwork.

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