“فلاحات على النيل” (1856) للمُستشرق الإنجليزيّ ليون أوجست أدولف بيلي، مجموعة فلاحات مصريات يملأن قدورهن مِن النيل، رسمَ بيلي اللوْحة في النصف الثاني من القرن التاسع عشر أثناء زيارته لمصر، نالت اللوْحة على إعجاب العديد مِن النُقَّاد والرسَّامين في صالون باريس للفن في تلكَ الفترة.

“Fellaheen Women by the Nile” 1856 by the french orientalist painter  Leon-August-Adolphe Belly (1827 - 1877), Fellaheen Women by the Nile is one of the major works that made a name for Belly at the Paris Salons. Belly produced this piece in Cairo in May and June of 1856.

Large (Wikimedia)

As the Musée d'Orsay writes, Jean-Léon Gérôme—painter of this, The Carpet Merchant, in 1887—is “a very unorthodox academic painter, [who]…knew how to represent history as a dramatic spectacle and, by creating particularly convincing images, could make the spectator an eyewitness to events ranging from Classical antiquity to his own times.”

Fitting as the description is, it might seem incongruous to call Gérome an “unorthodox” academic painter—after all, he was one of the last ardent defenders of academism.

Perhaps, though, his very willingness to remix the academic tradition, to apply its style and standards to his eclectic subjects, was what sustained his—and his audience's—interest.


Herbert James Draper, “The Foam Sprite”

Hans Zatzka, “Symphony of the Water Nymphs”

Gaston Bussiere (French, 1862-1929), “Salammbo”

Gaston Bussiere (French, 1862-1929), “Isolde” (1911)

Andrei Frantsevich Belloli (Russian, 1821-1881). “Bather”

Gustave Moreau, "Femme Au Griffon"

Jules Joseph Lefebvre, “Serving Tea”

Gaston Bussiere (French, 1862-1929), “Dance of the seven veils” (1926)

Gaston Bussiere (1862-1929), “Les Papillons d'Or”

Gaston Bussiere (1862-1929), “Оriental beauty”

Large (Wikimedia)

Ferdinand Max Bredt (1868–1921) likely painted In a Courtyard, Tunis during his travels in Tunisia.

Christie’s describes this piece as displaying Bredt’s “exceptional skill at calibrating tonal contrasts to generate atmospheric effects that are absolutely true to time and place.”

Paired with finely rendered details—the leaves that have fallen from the tree to rest at its base, the way the larger bangles slightly pinch the subject’s arms, the ragged edge of the matting the other woman sits upon—this sense of time (lent in part by the almost-liquidy light) gives the scene a surprising degree of realness.

Heightened by the casual (if deliberately balanced) poses of the two women, that realness becomes a pensive sort of domesticity.