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Young Women of Sparta (Jeunes filles de Sparte)

Jean-Baptiste-Camille Corot

European Art

Along with 42.196, this painting of a pale, contemplative young woman dressed in garments that conjure past times or distant places exemplifies Jean-Baptiste-Camille Corot’s practice as a figure painter. This painting portrays the model Mlle Darmelas wearing the traditional attire of the Italian town of Albano and gazing pensively into space. In the other, a favorite model, Emma Dobigny, reclines in a theatrical “gypsy” costume, while a trio of maidens in the background dance or perhaps engage in a physical contest reflecting the athleticism for which ancient Sparta was renowned. For Corot such costumes were interchangeable referents for imagined worlds, as well as opportunities to explore color, pattern, and texture in delicate touches of paint.
MEDIUM Oil on canvas
  • Place Made: Europe
  • DATES 1868–1870
    DIMENSIONS 16 3/4 x 29 7/16 in. (42.5 x 74.8 cm) frame: 26 × 39 × 4 3/8 in. ( 66 × 99.1 × 11.1 cm)  (show scale)
    SIGNATURE Signed lower left: "COROT"
    COLLECTIONS European Art
    CREDIT LINE Gift of Mrs. Horace O. Havemeyer
    PROVENANCE Prior to 1876, provenance not yet documented; before 1876, acquired by Michel Lévy of Paris, France; by March 1876, inherited from Michel Lévy by Mrs. Michel Lévy of Paris; March 17, 1876, sold by Mrs. Michel Lévy; between 1876 and 1889, provenance not yet documented; by 1889, acquired by Paul Michel Lévy; October 16, 1889, purchased from Paul Michel Lévy at Hôtel Drouot, Paris, lot 2, by Durand-Ruel, Paris; October 21, 1889, purchased from Durand-Ruel, no. 2536, by Henry Osborne Havemeyer and Louisine Waldron Elder Havemeyer; 1929, inherited from Louisine Havemeyer by Horace Havemeyer and Doris A. Dick Havemeyer; June 10, 1942, gift of Doris Havemeyer to the Brooklyn Museum.
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    MUSEUM LOCATION This item is not on view
    CAPTION Jean-Baptiste-Camille Corot (Paris, France, 1796–1875, Paris, France). Young Women of Sparta (Jeunes filles de Sparte), 1868–1870. Oil on canvas, 16 3/4 x 29 7/16 in. (42.5 x 74.8 cm). Brooklyn Museum, Gift of Mrs. Horace O. Havemeyer, 42.195 (Photo: Brooklyn Museum, 42.195_PS9.jpg)
    IMAGE overall, 42.195_PS9.jpg. Brooklyn Museum photograph, 2015
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    RIGHTS STATEMENT No known copyright restrictions
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