Studies of Men Turning a Cider Press, 1863-1864

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This is a preparatory sketch for Puvis de Chavanne's monumental mural "Ave Picardia Nutrix" ("Hail, Picardy, the Nourisher"), executed for a large staircase in the Musée de Picardie in Amiens, France. In the second half of the nineteenth century, a new interest in the unique history and culture of France's various regions arose. This type of regional patriotism is evident in Puvis' painting, which is an idealized representation of Picardy, a region north of Paris known for its apple harvest.

In this early sketch, Puvis is still working out a number of details. In the lower right is a study of four nude men laboring around a large press, turning apples into cider. A large, more detailed study of one of the toiling men dominates the upper part of the page. Below is a small schematic sketch in graphite of the spokes of the press seen from above, and perhaps indicating the placement of the figures. // We are grateful to Dr. Marianne Le Morvan for clarifying the provenance of this work.

Studies of Men Turning a Cider Press
Artist Life
1824 - 1898
Accession Number
Monsieur Hiltbrunner ['Charles Hiltbrunner], Paris. Auguste Bauchy, Paris (until 1923; his sale; Hotel Drouot, Paris, March 20, 1923, no. 51, for 500 Fr, to Le Garrec; [Galerie Sagot - Le Garrec, Paris, 1923; sold, for 1,500 Fr, to Mia]
Curator Approved

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