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

Hina te Fatou (The Moon and the Earth)

Oil on canvas, 112 x 61 cm
Museum of Modern Art, New York

The Moon and the Earth is Gauguin's depiction of an ancient Polynesian myth, in which Hina, the female spirit of the Moon, implores Fatou, the male spirit of the Earth, to grant humans eternal life. It is a request Fatou resolutely denies.

The painting was included in the exhibition that Gauguin organized at Durand-Ruel's gallery in Paris in November 1893. The works exhibited were his most recent: a few sculptures, three paintings from Brittany and 41 from Tahiti. In the end, only 11 paintings were sold and the artist Degas bought Hina te Fatou.

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