Two naked children appear to be bathing in a pool beneath a dark tree set against a cloudy, moonlit sky. A third child, who is clothed, sits on the bank near a patch of red that may be a fire.
It is likely that this picture was painted by a late nineteenth-century imitator of Theodore Rousseau and not by Rousseau himself. Some features of the painting – for example, the multi-directional brushwork of the sky and the delicate brushwork of the trees in background on the left – do recall landscapes painted by Rousseau. However, his landscapes are usually deserted. When he does include people, they never have the prominence of the three bathers we see here.
Unlike the lively confident brushwork of the background, the children themselves are crudely painted, and lines and dabs of thick dark paint have been used to add detail to their faces and clothing.
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