Parisian Lady (Primary Title)
La Parisienne (Alternate Title)
La Dame au Chien (Alternate Title)
The Plumed Hat (Le Chapeau à Plumes) (Alternate Title)

Kees Van Dongen, Dutch (active in France), 1877 - 1968 (Artist)

oil on canvas
Unframed: 24 3/8 × 20 in. (61.91 × 50.8 cm)
Framed: 28 1/2 × 24 1/4 in. (72.39 × 61.6 cm)

Following his training at the Academy of Fine Arts in Rotterdam between 1892 and 1897, Van Dongen relocated to Paris. In 1906, he moved into a studio neighboring Picasso's workshop in the Batteau-Lavoir district of Montmartre, where he met and befriended many artists, including the Fauve painters Derain and Vlaminck.

Haystacks marks the transition between the painter's early Post-Impressionist production and the clamorous palette and daring figuration of his most iconic period. The theme and the deliberately gestural application of paint appear like a pastiche of one of Van Gogh's scenes of laboring peasants; yet Van Dongen's choice to divide the canvas into two almost equal, roughly monochromatic zones prefigures the bold chromatic juxtapositions of his later work.

The striking compositional arrangement and surprising color contrasts in Parisian Lady show Van Dongen espousing the tendencies of Fauvism. His avant-garde representations of bohemian nightlife and Parisian high society during the optimistic decade before World War I earned Van Dongen both esteem and notoriety. The enormous hat and tiny dog that accessorize this fashionable socialite humorously convey the overstated elegance of the Belle Époque.

Signed, upper right, "Van Dongen"
Collection of Mr. and Mrs. Paul Mellon
2018-2020: "Gallery Takeover: European Masterpieces from the Mellon Collection at the Virginia Museum of Fine Arts", Museum of Fine Arts, St. Petersburg, Florida, March 1, 2018 - March 1, 2020

2018: Collecting for the Commonwealth Preserving for the Nation, Virginia Museum of Fine Arts, 1919-2018, Winter Antiques Show, Park Avenue Armory, New York City, NY, January 18 - 26, 2018.

1973: French Paintings from the Collection of Mr. and Mrs. Paul Mellon, Virginia Museum of Fine Arts, Richmond, VA, 1973

1967-1968: “French Paintings from the Collections of Mr. and Mrs. Paul Mellon,” VMFA, April 4, 1967-June 5, 1968

1960: “Collectors’ Circle,” VMFA, April 23-June 5, 1960

1937: “Chefs d’Oeuvre de la Peinture Contemporaine,” Petit Palais, Paris, 1937
©artist or artist’s estate

Some object records are not complete and do not reflect VMFA's full and current knowledge. VMFA makes routine updates as records are reviewed and enhanced.