Sterling and Francine Clark Art Institute, Williamstown
The more orthodox and darker oil-painting style, with smoother surface, which can be seen in the portrayal of Lautrec's models at this time, can be attributed to the influence of Bonnat, Lautrec's teacher. For instance, he painted a whole series of studies of the red-haired Carmen Gaudin, and an important picture entitled The Laundress.
The picture shows a detail of the right wing.
The open-air table, the cloth slung tent-like over the tree stump beside the temptress, and the servants pouring wine seem like a grotesque parody of the traditional Garden of Love.
David discovered the dramatically lit and forceful canvases of Caravaggio and his followers, and his full-length male nude and semi-nude studies such as Hector of 1778 and Patroclus of 1780 show how he had begun to use light and shadow to give weight and density to his figures.