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Under the name 'Val', Mme Fray exhibited at the Paris Salon, specializing, as was typical for women artists at the time, in flower painting. Valentine Fray (1870–1943) was one of Renoir's pupils. Renoir suggests nothing of his sitter's artistic abilities here – she holds a fan, not a palette. Luxuriating in the challenge of capturing the milky skin of her neck and shoulders Renoir delights in celebrating her sensuous beauty and avoids questioning the depths of her personality.
oil on canvas
H 64.8 x W 54 cm
bequeathed by William McInnes, 1944