Joseph Brummer (1883–1947)

Image credit: The National Gallery, London

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Staring straight at us while nonchalantly holding a cigarette is the Hungarian-born art dealer Joseph Brummer (1883‒1947), who had opened his gallery in Paris that same year. Brummer dealt in African works of art and was one of Rousseau’s most devout patrons. Seated in a wicker chair covered in red velvet, the young art dealer is set against a landscape. The work is characteristic of Rousseau’s portrait-landscapes, in which he incorporated landscape to hint at his sitter’s identity. The self-taught artist was known for his elaborate paintings of imaginary jungles, with a variety of wild animals and colourful vegetation. His unconventional style was not well received at the beginning of his career, with critics describing his technique as ‘childish’.

The National Gallery, London



Joseph Brummer (1883–1947)




oil on canvas


H 115.9 x W 88.3 cm

Accession number


Acquisition method

bequeathed by Simon Sainsbury, 2006; entered the Collection, 2023

Work type



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The National Gallery, London

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