Pierre A. Renoir(1842-1919), one of the top three Impressionists fathers with Monet and Sisley, was born in Limoges, France, where he started painting decorations for the porcelain industry, gaining experience with the light, fresh colors that were to distinguish his Impressionist work and also learning the importance of good craftsmanship.
Renois is perhaps the best-loved of all the Impressionists, for his subjects---pretty children, flowers, beautiful scenes, above all lovely women---have instant appeal, and he communicated the joy he took in them with great directness. `Why shouldn't art be pretty?', he said, `There are enough unpleasant things in the world.' A view that should be shared by too many modern artists who think that Art must be ugly and provocative.
This exquisite picture painted in 1877 was one of the seven Goldsmith pictures which had blasted Sotheby's into orbit. It was bought in 1958 for 72,000 Pounds ($203,000) but in 1984 it was accepted by the Governement of Her Majesty The Queen Elisabeth II in lieu of tax from the Executors of the Jack Cotton Will Trust for a gross value of £2 million ($2.8 million).
The year 1984 was the start of a boom in Art prices and a period of mega-prices which continues to this day except for a decline from 1990 to 1993. Renoir died in Cagnes, Cote d'Azur, at the end of WW1.