Women Walking on the Beach Joaquin Sorolla 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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Women Walking on the Beach (Strolling along the Seashore) is one of Joaquin Sorolla's most famous paintings. This artwork was completed in 1909 and is currently part of the Museo Sorolla collection in Madrid, Spain.

The painting displays the image of two women walking on the beach, as the name suggests. The women who are depicted in the painting are Joaquin Sorolla's wife, Clotilde, and their eldest daughter called Maria. The foreground and bottom of the painting display the sand on which the two ladies are walking just a couple of meters away from the sea. The mother and daughter duo wear long white sundresses and straw hats. The daughter holds the straw hat on in her hands while the mother wears hers. The daughter’s hat is decorated with purple flowers and a turquoise bow. Maria, who was 19 at the time when her father made this masterpiece wears a simple long dress that accurately displays her slender figure.

The sleeves of the dress are made of a transparent white cloth that is different from the rest of the dress. The same cloth is featured on her backside just below the chest, where it appears to be blown by the wind. The neck of the dress features a stand-up collar. She also appears to be wearing brown shoes made of leather, and her hair is pinned into a knot. On the other hand, Clotilde walks behind her daughter in a white dress paired with a belt and white shoes of the same color.

Alongside her cropped sleeve dress, she carries a jacket of the same color in front of her abdomen on her left forearm. In her left arm, she holds a parasol (also white), which is angled to the ground on the right side. The mother also has on a straw hat with details that are similar to that of Maria. The hat features a greenish but transparent veil that is draped over the hat and falls over her face. The vail, however, appears to be blown horizontally backward by the wind on the beach. Her right-hand attempts to adjust the veil or hold it in place because of the impact of the wind. While the hat obscures most of her hair, there are small details that show it to be black. Unlike the daughter, most of the mother’s face is also covered.

Within Strolling along the Seashore, behind the images of the mother and daughter, is a seamless transition from the beach to the sea, which is painted using different shades of blue. The painting is drawn on a large canvas of 205 cm (height) and 200 cm (width). The most dominant color used in the painting is white. However, like the French impressionists, Joaquin Sorolla mixed the white with a variety of colors, including blue, yellow, and lilac.

The scenery displayed in this piece of art is the Playa de El Cabanyal Beach, located in Joaquin Sorolla's hometown of Valencia. Until the death of Joaquin Sorolla, the painting of women on the beach was in his possession. After his death, the ownership was transferred to his son Joaquin Sorolla Gracia. The son became the first director of the museum named after his father. The museum sits on what used to be the home of Joaquin and Clotilde. In 1931, the wife bequeathed the house as well as the inventory to the government of Spain. However, it was until 1948, following the death of the son, when the painting of the women walking on the beach was given to the government and became part of the Museo Sorolla collection in Madrid.