William-Adolphe Bouguereau, Le Livre De Prix


Dispatches within 48 hrs, Tracked, insured worldwide delivery

Gallery Quality Prints

William-Adolphe Bouguereau, Le Livre De Prix

The young girl in this painting is Yvonne, one of Bouguereau’s favorite models. She and her two sisters, Jeanne and Marguerite, provided inspiration for many of the works painted in La Rochelle from 1893 on. While little is known about their personal biographies, their growth from infants to adolescents can be followed through a decade of compositions (as well as the occasional photograph taken in the artist's studio). From Yvonne’s first appearance in Allant à la fontaine (1893, J.B. Speed Museum, Louisville, Kentucky) to Les petites amies (1898, Collection of Fortnum & Mason) and the present work, it is clear that Bouguereau was sensitive to portraying her distinctive personality as much as her likeness. While many other sitters appear distracted by faraway thoughts, their gaze drifting beyond the picture plane, Yvonne is almost always portrayed with a direct stare that connects with the viewer and shows a clear expression of emotion and intelligence. Yvonne is about ten years old in Le livre de prix, and she appears to regard the viewer with the same curiosity that she has for the book she is reading.

The livre de prix refers to the often beautifully decorated red-jacketed "prize books" given to children as a reward, filled with stories of exotic adventure, illustrative etchings, and educational texts. In his 1681 Traité de l'éducation des filles (Treatise on the Education of Girls) the priest Fénelon suggested that beautiful books could be shared with well-deserving children, but it wasn’t until the mid-nineteenth century that the tradition was commonly adopted in French schools.

While the work displays many of the hallmarks of Bouguereau’s most iconic paintings, Le livre de prix is distinguished by unique characteristics that set it apart, most notably the spare background and limited color palette. In order to highlight the figure and convey depth, Bouguereau typically sets his models against a vast landscape or deep in a forest. Although beautifully rendered and carefully modeled, the expanse of wall seen here is uncharacteristically bare. The neatly squared horizontal lines of the floor and baseboard offer the only anchor and provide a stage that grounds the painting. Eschewing dramatic contrast, Le livre de prix is a near monochromatic opus, the background’s expanse of warm white pigments close in value to those of her cotton dress, skin and hair. The modern-looking tableau is punctuated only by the lines of the ebonized chair, and the brilliant scarlet red of the book, also used in her lips and skin.

William-Adolphe Bouguereau (French: [buɡ(ə)ʁo]; November 30, 1825 – August 19, 1905) was a French academic painter and traditionalist. In his realistic genre paintings he used mythological themes, making modern interpretations of classical subjects, with an emphasis on the female human body. During his life he enjoyed significant popularity in France and the United States, was given numerous official honors, and received top prices for his work. As the quintessential salon painter of his generation, he was reviled by the Impressionist avant-garde. By the early twentieth century, Bouguereau and his art fell out of favor with the public, due in part to changing tastes. In the 1980s, a revival of interest in figure painting led to a rediscovery of Bouguereau and his work.

Available as a fine art print  in the following sizes:
6x9 inches

8x12 inches

10x15 inches

12x18 inches

16x24 inches

20x30 inches

24x36 inches

And as a stretched canvas panel (heavy fine art canvas stretched over 1.5 inch deep edge solid wood frame)

highest quality canvas panels

deep edge canvas prints

Canvas panel sizes:

8x12 inches

16x24 inches

20x30 inches


All prints are made using archival art stocks and UV pigment inks to give up to 200 years life. Prints are sold unframed and unmounted.


All orders for unframed fine art prints and original paintings are dispatched within 2 working days of receipt of payment.

Orders for custom framed prints are dispatched within 4 working days.

All orders are fully tracked from dispatch to delivery at your home or business.

All print and original painting orders are fully insured against loss or damage in transit. We refund or replace any damaged or lost orders.

Buy with confidence - read what our satisfied customers have to say - Reviews

Size and Printed Materials

Fine art papers are printed without any additional white border Please let us know at the time of ordering if you would like a small additional white border.

Rolled canvas options have an additional white border of approximately 2.5 inches (7cm) on all 4 sides to aid stretching.

Ready to hang canvas panels are stretched on 1.5 inch deep solid pine frames from sustainable forestry sources. The image is mirrored on all 4 sides to give an aesthetically pleasing finish.

Gift Wrap Option

Why not have us gift wrap your order and attach a personalised message to the recipient. Available for all orders. Each order is hand wrapped in high quality gift wrap with meatllic ribbon and bow. Your personalised message is printed on a card which is included with your order.

Have your hand wrapped gift delivered directly to the recipient.

Full tracking and insurance included with every order.

Please note design may vary depending upon availability

Just purchase the gift wrap option HERE

Finest Quality Wall Art

What makes our prints and canvas panels so special

Latest pigment ink fine art printers1

Latest Giclee printing technology

We have invested in the latest wide format print technology to produce museum quality giclee prints utilising the highest quality pigment inks to give outstanding colour reproduction.

Museum quality Archival art papers2

Museum quality archival fine art papers

We print on the finest quality fine art papers with textured, smooth and lustre finishes for prints which last a lifetime. From aceo to 40x80 inch large format, every print has our lifetime quality guarantee.

Solid wood frames, cotton canvas3

Solid wood frames, cotton canvas

 All of the wood for our canvas panels and frames is responsibly sourced from managed forests. Our cotton canvas is completely seedless for the highest quality reproduction possible.

Picture Frames, Custom Made Print Frames - Lots of Sizes

Choose a custom frame

Have your choice of prints mounted and framed from our wide range of colours and styles.

Have your gift wrapped

Why not have us gift wrap your order and attach a personalised message to the recipient. Available for all orders. Each order is hand wrapped in high quality gift wrap with meatllic ribbon and bow. Your personalised message is printed on a card which is included with your order.

Gift Wrap Any Order - With Personalised Message


This was a present for my wife and she loves it. The quality is very good. Thanks for your excellent service.

Fantastic packaging and a stunning print. Thank you!

Great quality and a good idea to include a 'free gift' mini-pic to show what the other finishes are like.

Really excellent print quality! I have just had my print framed and it looks great thank you

This arrived quickly and is great quality, thank you! :)

My art print arrived quickly and in excellent condition! Very high quality print! Thank you!!

love my print! Very fast professional service Thank you very much

I ordered the canvas panel as a gift for my sister and she was delighted the canvas is really good quality and perfectly stretched. The finish on the back was really profesionally done too

Amazing print well printed and a reasonable price

Customer Reviews

Be the first to write a review