(b. 1848, Paris, d. 1903, Atuona, Hiva Oa, French Polynesia)

Two Girls Bathing

Oil on canvas, 92 x 72 cm
Museo Nacional de Bellas Artes, Buenos Aires

Gauguin had already turned to the theme of bathing in works like The Beach at Dieppe, but this was his first attempt at the subject of two female bathers which he was to develop in Tahiti. The work went on display at the Parisian gallery of Boussod and Valadon in February 1888.

The strangely androgynous central nude figure precludes any conventional reading of a study in voluptuous nudity. In fact, the two anonymous figures are much closer to a series of nude male boy wrestlers that Gauguin painted the following year.

© Web Gallery of Art, created by Emil Krén and Daniel Marx.