In 1857, French landscape painter Charles François Daubigny (1817–1878) purchased a 27-foot ferryboat and converted it into a floating studio from which he could observe and paint at all times of day. Rivers often take center stage in Daubigny’s paintings—three of which are in the Taft collection—with innovative, water-level perspectives that influenced younger generations of artists, including the Impressionist Claude Monet, who built a studio boat of his own.
The Boat Trip documents Daubigny’s first studio boat voyages on the river Seine north of Paris. During these trips, Daubigny created a visual diary of 47 ink drawings, from which he selected 15 as the basis for the etching series Voyage en Bateau (The Boat Trip). The artist’s sense of humor and whimsy—as well as his endearing relationship with his 12-year-old son and “cabin boy” Charlot—emerge throughout scenes of eating, sleeping, fishing, and painting aboard the rustic boat nicknamed the Botin (little box).
Exhibition Support Generously Provided By
Ellen and George Rieveschl Endowment
Warrington Exhibition Endowment
Chellgren Family Endowment
Sallie Robinson Wadsworth Endowment for Exhibitions