Dionisio Baixeras y Verdaguer, Boatmen of Barcelona, 1886
Dionisio Baixeras y Verdaguer (1862-1943) was a Spanish artist from Barcelona. He was one of Spain's foremost genre painters, depicting people's everyday lives in Catalonia, especially fishermen who were so essential to Barcelona's economy. Baixeras studied the French realists such as Millet and Breton, and their influence is evident in his work. He shows the same interest in rural life, the relationship of sunlight and landscape to labor, and exhibits excellent draftsmanship with expressive brushwork. Boatmen of Barcelona is one of Baixeras's better known works. The intensity of the morning sunlight is quite powerful. Baixeras demonstrates great facility with his textures, in the clothing and beards of the men, and especially visible on the boat in the patch of wood the sun shines on directly. This large painting, currently hanging in the Met, makes quite an impression in person.