(My Study for a School of Renoir) is in oil on paper sealed with a shellac so that the oil does not penetrate the paper. I usually make drawings and studies when investigating the idea for a painting. The purpose is not only to work out the composition but to test color relationships and to practice the technique of the artist whose work I am investigating. I did not develop my investigation of Renoir beyond the study on paper ... (making it) the only School of Renoir that I have made.
An objective in all my "school of ..." works is to make the subject readily recognizable, in this case recognizably Renoir. Therefore I have quoted well-known paintings by Renoir:
in the left background, Mme. Charpentier and Her Children, Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York;
in the right background, The Bathers, Philadelphia Museum of Art;
up front, the man and woman from Luncheon of the Boating Party, The Phillips Collection, Washington, D.C.
The man in the background sitting at the easel painting is Renoir, from a photograph taken in 1914. The blackboard, desks and schoolroom setting are mine.
(George Deem, letter to Mr. and Mrs. G. Richard Eykamp, December 2, 1995)