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Between and Mortarboard

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Breton Women Going to the Pardon of Plougastel

Accession Number

Breton Women Going to the Pardon of Plougastel

Charles Cottet

Artist Nationality
French (culture or style)

Object Creation Date

Medium & Support
oil on paper mounted on canvas

44 7/8 in. x 64 in. ( 114 cm x 162.5 cm )

Credit Line
Gift of Mrs. Atwood R. McAndrew, Jr.

Subject matter
Charles Cottet was known for painting scenes representing life in the Brittany area of France. This painting shows a group of women, dressed in traditional Breton costume, who are to participate in a "pardon", an annual religious procession. The Brittany pardon was a popular subject matter for artists during the last half of the nineteenth century because it allowed a portrayal of the folklore and customs of that region of France, an area of interest for Realist and Symbolist painters. Here, Cottel does not show the procession itself, but a small group of women gathered in a lush green field. They wear the traditional costumes of the town of Plougastel with purple and burgundy skirts, green blouses and multi-colored aprons. The women have bright white collars and caps with purple, burgundy and green ribbons. The two girls wear colorful caps over their unbound hair and have decorated vests.

Physical Description
This painting, done in thick brushstrokes, shows a group of women gathered on the grass in a wooded area. There are six figures, four seated and two standing, and they fill the foreground of the composition. They are grouped in a semi-circle, however, there is no communication or eye contact between the figures. The women are wearing traditional Breton costumes with brightly colored aprons, caps and sashes. They have bright white collars and caps with purple, burgundy and green ribbons.

Primary Object Classification

Primary Object Type

Collection Area

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costume (mode of fashion)
modern and contemporary art
women (female humans)

2 Related Resources

(Part of 9 Learning Collections)
Social realism, mid-19th century to mid-20th century
(Part of 8 Learning Collections)

& Author Notes

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