Dolce Far Niente
Sargent’s Alpine figure subjects in oil closely parallel his watercolors, both in composition and in the bright palette and lively brushwork with which he recorded the play of brilliant sun on green grass and summer clothing. To suggest an orientalist sensuality, Sargent often dressed his models in costumes that he had purchased in the Middle East and carted in trunks to the Alps. Here his compression of the composition (several figures seem almost to merge with the water) further enhanced the intimacy of the gathering. All three male figures were modeled by Nicola d’Inverno, Sargent’s manservant, a fact that reveals the contrivances underpinning these seemingly casual scenes.
- Artist: John Singer Sargent, American, 1856-1925
- Medium: Oil on canvas
- Dates: ca. 1907
- Dimensions: 16 1/4 x 28 1/4 in. (41.3 x 71.7 cm) Frame: 24 3/8 x 36 3/8 x 3 in. (61.9 x 92.4 x 7.6 cm) (show scale)
- Signature: Signed lower right: "John S. Sargent"
- Collections:American Art
- Museum Location: This item is on view in American Identities: A New Look, Expanding Horizons, 5th Floor
- Accession Number: 11.518
- Credit Line: Bequest of A. Augustus Healy
- Rights Statement: No known copyright restrictions
- Caption: John Singer Sargent (American, 1856-1925). Dolce Far Niente, ca. 1907. Oil on canvas, 16 1/4 x 28 1/4 in. (41.3 x 71.7 cm). Brooklyn Museum, Bequest of A. Augustus Healy, 11.518
- Record Completeness: Best (89%)