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The Shepherdess of Rolleboise

A dreamy mood prevails in this dignified image of a French shepherdess. The pastoral setting provides a poetic backdrop to her youth and beauty, creating a picture that erases the social realities of peasant life. Daniel Ridgway Knight, who was born in Philadelphia and expatriated to France in the early 1870s, was well aware of this painting's potential for success when it debuted at the Paris Salon in 1896; it combined the silvery gray palette and romanticized peasant subject matter that were then popular in Europe and in the United States.

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