Although he painted a broad range of subjects and executed designs for porcelain and tapestries, François Boucher’s canvases of pastoral themes represent his most influential contribution to 18th-century French art. These idealized visions of rustic life, indebted to Jean-Antoine Watteau’s images of “fête galantes,” or open-air courtship parties, typically feature shepherds and shepherdesses engaged in amorous pursuits. This work was inspired by a contemporary theater piece, which was first performed as a pantomime at a Parisian fair in 1745. The painting’s playfully coy title derives from that of an engraving of a similar image.


  • Title: Are They Thinking about the Grape? (Pensent-ils au raisin?)
  • Creator: François Boucher (French, 1703–1770)
  • Date Created: 1747
  • Physical Dimensions: Oval, 80.8 × 68.5 cm (31 3/4 × 27 in.)
  • Type: Painting
  • External Link: The Art Institute of Chicago
  • Media: Oil on canvas
  • Credit Line: The Art Institute of Chicago, Martha E. Leverone Endowment, 1973.304
  • Artist: François Boucher (French, 1703–1770)

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