Thomas Hovenden, Studies of Farm Cats and Figures
Thomas Hovenden probably made these drawings of Breton farm carts in the late 1870s when he lived in an artist colony in the village of Pont-Aven in Brittany, France. What attracted the group of American and British painters to the Breton village was the provincial, traditional way of life they found there.
Hovenden sought to capture the peasants’ values in his drawings and genre paintings. The people in Pont-Aven performed many tasks without the use of new mechanical inventions made popular during the Industrial Revolution. The carts depicted in this drawing were among the very few modern tools adopted in the region.