Oil on canvas, by Pierre Bonnard, 1891
Musée d'Orsay

Claude Terrasse, a composer and Bonnard's wartime companion, sits comfortably hunched over in a thick coat and a brimmed hat, smoking a pipe. Next to him, partially obscured in the shadows, is his wife, Andrée Bonnard, the painter's sister. In the foreground, a hand, most likely Bonnard's own, extends across the canvas holding a long pipe with smoke rising from it. This framing technique, reminiscent of Japanese prints that the Nabis group admired, draws the viewer in. This work represents one of Bonnard's early Intimist pieces, showcasing the unrestricted composition he had developed throughout his career. The smoke rising from the pipes and Andrée's cigarette echoes the intricate, decorative patterns on the wallpaper. These elements work together to create a sense of intimacy, condensing the space and fostering a warm, slightly enigmatic atmosphere.


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