Back to Exhibition Overview Page Back to Home Page

Te Rerioa (The Dream)
oil on canvas
The Samuel Courtauld Trust,
The Courtauld Gallery, London

When Gauguin journeyed to Tahiti for the second time, in 1895, he had a stopover in New Zealand. While awaiting his ship to be serviced, he spent time at the Auckland Museum, which held a collection of Maori art. Among the objects that he encountered there was an elaborately carved decorative bowl with two figures that formed the handles. Two years later Gauguin included a painted version of the wooden bowl in The Dream, but he converted it into a cradle for a sleeping baby. The dream of the title is uncertain. As Gauguin suggested, "Everything is dreamlike about this canvas; is it the child, is it the mother, is it the horseman on the path? Or is it the painter's dream!"

Close Window

help | search | site map | contact us | privacy | terms of use | press | NGA Images | home | Go to our page on Facebook Go to our page on Twitter

Copyright © 2008 National Gallery of Art, Washington, DC