Two Sisters (On the Terrace)
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The models who sat for Renoir’s work Two Sisters weren't actually related.

Turns out the first owner wasn't such a fan of the sisterhood title and changed it to On the Terrace later historians changed it back to Renoir's original title. While no one knows who modeled as the younger sister, the figure of the older sister is based on the visage of eighteen-year-old Jeanne Darlot.

After posing for Renoir on the terrace of the Restaurant Fournaise overlooking the Seine in the village of Chatou, Jeanne tried her hand at acting, appearing in French comedic productions. Unfortunately, when the stage was not as kind to her as she to it, Jeanne switched her profession to that of sexual companion. Ms. Darlot became the kept mistress of a French chocolate manufacturer before giving up the bon-bons to be the mischievous mademoiselle of influential senator.

Renoir had a mistress or two himself during his life. A seamstress turned model named Lise Tréhot was Renoir’s romantic interest in his younger years. Tréhot was the mother of Renoir’s first child Jeanne, a girl who he never publicly acknowledged. Man, girls named Jeanne just couldn’t catch a break back then. In his later years, he sired his son Pierre with his longtime beau Aline Charigot. Five years after Pierre’s birth Renoir finally married Charigot and legitimized his son.

Speaking of legitimacy, the real version of Renoir’s Two Sisters hangs proudly in the Art Institute of Chicago where it has been showcased since 1933 when Annie Coburn bequeathed it to the museum. This would barely be worth mentioning if not for the years-long claim of President Donald Trump saying that he owns the real version of Renoir’s masterpiece. Trump’s fake portrait of the Two Sisters once hung in his private jet before he moved it to Trump Tower in New York. The fake can even be seen in background of Trump’s interview with 60 Minutes from when he was president-elect. Both those at the Art Institute and other art historians and scholars are all confident that the real Two Sisters has its home in Chicago.

Unlike President Trump, The French Impressionist painter never really cared about any criticisms of his personal life, nor did he take stock in the criticisms of his work. In fact, the basket containing balls of wool in Two Sisters is supposedly a response to an art critic who threw shade at Renoir’s style of painting. The critic compared his paintings to knitting when he called one, “A weak sketch seemingly executed in wool of different colours.” Renoir clapped back with the inclusion of colorful balls of wool in this painting, showing the world he couldn’t care less about their ~fake~ opinion. Right on, Renoir.




  1. Editors. “Pierre-Auguste Renoir.” A&E Television Networks. 22 Feb. 2016. Accessed 15 July 2017. Web.
  2. GalleryIntell Staff. “Two Sisters by Pierre-Auguste Renoir.” Accessed 15 July 2017. Web.
  3. “Impressionism: Moon Tang talks on Renoir's Two Sisters(On the Terrace), 1881.” Modernist Art History. 25 Jan. 2015. Accessed 15 July 2017. Web.
  4. “Overview: Renoir's Two Sisters (On the Terrace).” Art Institute of Chicago. Impressionism and Post-Impressionism in The Art Institute of Chicago. Art Institute of Chicago, 2000, p. 71. Web.
  5. Bilton, Nick. “DONALD TRUMP’S FAKE RENOIR: THE UNTOLD STORY.” Vanity Fair. Accessed 23 Oct. 2017. Web.
  6. Graham, Chris. “'Fake art': Donald Trump 'boasts he has original Renoir' - but Chicago gallery says it's not authentic.” The Telegraph. Accessed 23 Oct. 2017. Web.

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Here is what Wikipedia says about Two Sisters (On the Terrace)

Two Sisters or On the Terrace is an 1881 oil-on-canvas painting by French artist Pierre-Auguste Renoir in the collection of the Art Institute of Chicago. The dimensions of the painting are 100.5 cm × 81 cm. The title Two Sisters (French: Les Deux Sœurs) was given to the painting by Renoir, and the title On the Terrace (French: Sur la terrasse) by its first owner Paul Durand-Ruel.

Renoir worked on the painting on the terrace of the Maison Fournaise, a restaurant located on an island in the Seine in Chatou, the western suburb of Paris. The painting depicts a young woman and her younger sister seated outdoors with a small basket containing balls of wool. Over the railings of the terrace one can see shrubbery and foliage with the River Seine behind it.

In 1880 to 1881, shortly before working on Two Sisters, Renoir worked in this particular location on another well-known painting, Luncheon of the Boating Party.

Jeanne Darlot (1863—1914), a future actress who was 18 years old at the time, was posing as "the elder sister." It is unknown who posed as the "younger sister," but it is stated that the models were not actually related.

Renoir began work on the painting in April 1881 and on July 7, 1881, it was bought by the art dealer, Paul Durand-Ruel, for 1,500 francs. The painting was presented for the first time to the public at the 7th Impressionist exhibition in the spring of 1882. In 1883 it was known to be in the collection of Charles Ephrussi, an art collector and a publisher, but in 1892 the painting was returned again to the collection of the Durand-Ruel family.

In 1925, the painting was sold to Annie Swan Coburn from Chicago for $100,000. After her death in 1932 the painting was bequeathed to the Art Institute of Chicago, where it has remained since 1933.

Check out the full Wikipedia article about Two Sisters (On the Terrace).