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Charles Emile Jacque (French, 1813–1894),
Return of the Flock , n.d.
oil on canvas, 22 x 18 ¼ in.; 55.88 x 46.36 cm
Gift of Francis T. B. Martin, 1991.4

Painter, printmaker, and illustrator, Jacque joined the artists’ colony in the village of Barbizon in the 1840s. Rural subjects, especially farm animals, became his favored subject matter, and he produced numerous compositions featuring chickens or sheep in farm yards and in barns. Jacque’s manner of painting in increasingly thick impasto (eventually relying almost exclusively on the palette knife) produces a rich paint texture that simulates the physical qualities of straw, rough masonry, and animal hair and plumage, accounting for the lifelike naturalism of his works.

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