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Sheep by the Sea
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ebrowne's picture

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These sweet little clouds depicted in Sheep by the Sea are just hanging out waiting patiently for Rosa Bonheur to leave them TF alone.

They have quite the “Eff off Rosa” look in their eye and are tired of staying still for this stupid portrait. Gaaaaad! Rosa Bonheur loved to paint animals since she was a little kid, and because she got kicked out of most schools she attended, she got to paint animals professionally! Woohoo? The more time Bonheur spend with humans, the more she liked her sheep and cow  friends and it got to the point where she became the crazy cattle lady and painted livestock exclusively. After she made it to the big time (the Paris Salon 1853) with The Horse Fair, her popularity began to subside. Bonheur’s gallerist, Ernest Gambart decided that it would be a good idea for Bonheur to visit the United Kingdom to both draw inspiration from lots of sheep and cows in picturesque landscapes and to raise awareness of Rosa Bonheur amongst the English and Scottish elite. It was a win for everyone, but especially for Bonheur because she wasn’t paying for any of it.

During this time, Bonheur’s lover and an artist in her own right, Anna Klumpke got to tag along and made extensive diary entries about their trip. She wrote that, “They spent over two weeks at Ballachullish, staying in a small hotel ‘wedged between the sea and the mountains.’ They evidently chose this area partly for its historical associations but mainly because the Pass of Glencoe, as a drove road offered the opportunity for Bonheur to sketch the sheep and Highland cattle.” This time is perhaps what made the trip so successful for Bonheur and her gallerist alike. Ernest got his paintings and Rosa got to spend time with very few people and many, many sheep.

Sources

Sources

  1. "SHEEP BY THE SEA 1865." National Museum of Women in the Arts. Web. 11 Sept. 2017.
  2. Fowle, Frances. "Picturing The Highlands: Rosa Bonheur’s Grand Tour Of Scotland." Academia.edu. N.p., 2014. Web. 11 Sept. 2017.