The Wedding Party Henri Rousseau Buy Art Prints Now
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Tom Gurney BSc (Hons) is an art history expert with over 20 years experience
Published on June 19, 2020 / Updated on October 14, 2023
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Among the most known works of Henri Rousseau, The Wedding Party is one of them. The wedding party painting is a group portrait taken outside consisting of eight people, including the bride. It was exhibited at the Salon des independants of 1905.

He was recognized because of his great work, which was of high artistic quality, and as a result, he was termed a self-taught genius. He was born into the family of a plumber and attended both day and boarding school in Laval high school. He won several prizes for drawing and music while in school.

The painting has a large-sized group of individualized faces on the portrait placed right in front of many trees whose species are meticulously differentiated. The foreground is occupied by a cut-out figure of a dog painted in black. The trees in The wedding party portrait recedes sharply due to the decreasing sizes of the leaves and trunks and their arrangement. Therefore, it is seen that artist sought to break the convectional painted backdrops away. The convectional backdrops used to be placed behind every group photograph in the studio interiors.

Since 1905 no one has ever known the identity of "The Wedding Party by Henri Rousseau”. However, it is believed that the artist (Henri Rousseau) is on the painting. The artist painted himself on the figure behind the bride on the right side, wearing a black suit similar to other men behind the bride. It looks like “The wedding party “was based on a photograph. The static composition can clearly show that Henri Rousseau had some challenges in positioning and foreshortening the painting more convincingly. The bride appears to be placed awkwardly, as does the grandfather seated on the stump of a tree. The painting also appears as superimposed themes on a designed background. However, the awkwardness does not detract from the beauty of the figure.

The immobile painting is intentionally presented simplistically on a single plane that looks like a flat silhouette devoid. The X-ray examination of "The wedding party" shows several alterations to the original content. The grandmother (on the right side of the portrait) originally wore a long dress that stretched as far as the dog. Also, the bridal veil was initially painted over the already completed figures. The medium used in this painting is oil on canvas, and it was dated 1905. The dimensions of the painting are 1630mm in height (64.17in) and 1140mm(44.88in) in width. It is currently located at Musée de l'Orangerie in Paris. Elsewhere within thi website are many more artworks by this artist, including Self Portrait, Waterfall and Eve.