Here Bonnard paints the view from the balcony of his house at Vernonnet. The painting teems with life and colour – a small figure dashes through long grass towards the bottom of the painting, and seems to leave a trail of cleared grass behind him, adding to the dense feel of the rendered foliage. Bonnard rarely painted in situ, instead preferring to take photographs and make several preparatory sketches before painting the final piece, selecting the colours from memory.
Balcony at Vernonnet
The C C Land Exhibition: Pierre Bonnard: The Colour of Memory
Date of work
Pierre Bonnard (1867 – 1947) was a French artist who worked in the fields of painting, print-making, and photography. His work is best known for his use of colour, unusual vantage points and intimate portraits of domestic scenes from his own life. He was part of the Les Nabis group of avant-garde artists in the 1890s, alongside Paul Sérusier, Édouard Vuillard, and Maurice Denis. Bonnard often worked from memory, giving his paintings a dream-like quality.