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image: Henri Rousseau: Jungels in Paris
image: Tiger in a Tropical Storm (Surprised!)

Surprised!

Tiger in a Tropical Storm (Surprised!) was Rousseau's first jungle painting. Although Rousseau never witnessed anything like the scene rendered, the subject matter was not unusual for its time, especially among academic painters, who regularly depicted exotic subjects. Exhibited at the Salon des Indépendants in 1891, the painting was ridiculed for its amateurish technique and childlike naïveté. But it also gained Rousseau his first serious review, from the young painter Félix Vallotton: "His tiger surprising its prey is a 'must-see'; it's the alpha and omega of painting and so disconcerting that, before so much competency and childish naïveté, the most deeply rooted convictions are held up and questioned." Yet it was more than a decade before Rousseau returned to the jungle theme.

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Introduction | Surprised! | Forests | Suburban Landscapes | Allegories | Portraits
Dangerous Exotic | Jungles | Exhibition Information

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