Landscape with Distant Buildings and a Herdswoman


François Boucher ( French, 1703 - 1770 )

About 1731
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General Description

A woman on horseback herds her livestock across a simple wooden bridge, followed by a youth playing a pipe. Although these figures are meant to evoke the rustic peasants of Italian genre painting, they also possess a grace and elegance that is characteristic of Boucher’s paintings. Made shortly after the artist’s return to France from a period of study in Italy, this small landscape includes both peaceful rural imagery in the foreground and fantastical classical architecture in the distance. Both elements seem to be more the product of Boucher’s fertile imagination than the recording of any recognizable place or time.