barber institute of fine arts
university of birmingham

Edouard Vuillard (1868 – 1940)

Madame Vuillard Arranging Her Hair

Paris, 1900

Oil on cardboard


We witness a private domestic scene: the artist’s mother is posed in front of a mirror in the Parisian apartment where they lived.

Vuillard took numerous family photographs and the snapshot effect here reflects this; indeed, he may have used a photograph to paint the figure in addition to a pencil sketch.  The artist’s mother ran a dressmaking business from their home and Vuillard’s style was influenced by the textiles that surrounded him.  Here he combines the patterns of his mother’s dress, the carpet, bed cover and wallpaper to create a richly varied decorative surface.


Purchased 1963 (No.63.3)