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TC

CAP Gra
ades 677 Writingg
Practtice Taskk II
Text 2

Text 2 Introducti
I
ion
In A Life Painting Animals by
b Diana Ch
hildress, the author discuusses painterr Rosa Bonhheur
and the obstacles
o
that she overcaame to find su
uccess.
Please reead A Life Painting
P
Aniimals and th
hen answer P
Prompt 2.

A Life Pa
ainting An
nimals
Dia
ana Childress

Rosa Bon
nheurs lovee of animals went
w hand in
n hand with her love of aart.
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Moo! Baa!

Anim
mal sounds filled
fi
the air as drovers pprodded the ccattle and shheep into tow
wn.
The Septtember livesttock market was underw
way. All at onnce, unnerveed by the thrrongs of peopple,
the oxen lowered theeir long horn
ns and chargeed. Screaminng onlookerss ran for covver. But
Rosa Bon
nheur stood her ground. She opened
d up her sketcchbook and began to draaw.

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Rosa Bon
nheur never feared anim
mals. As a sm
mall child in tthe south off France in thhe 1820s, shee
terrified her
h parents by
b running in
nto pastures to admire thhe bulls. Whhen she grew
w up, she keppt
lions as pets.
p

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Rosas lo
ove of animaals went hand
d in hand wiith her love oof art. From
m early childhhood, she plaayed
with her artist fathers paints and
d brushes, paainting the w
walls as high as she couldd reach. But her
path towaard becomin
ng one of thee greatest aniimal painterss of the nineeteenth centuury was not eeasy.

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Overcom
ming Obstaccles

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Her first obstacle was her father. Raymond Bonheur


B
knew
w how hard it was to earrn a living aas an
ghter needed
d a more pracctical career. But Rosa sstubbornly
artist. Hee decided hiss oldest daug
refused to
o learn dresssmaking. At last, when Rosa
R
was thiirteen, her faather agreed to let her
study art.

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At that tiime, art scho


ools in Francce were closeed to womenn. Since Rosas father beelieved in givving
women equal
e
opportu
unities, he began to train
n her at hom
me.

S e c ur e M a t e r i a l s . D o n o t c o p y wi t hho u t e x p r e s s p e r m i s s i o n .
7

TC
CAP Gra
ades 677 Writingg
Practtice Taskk II
Text 2
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orning, before he went to


o work, he gave
g
her a drrawing assiggnment. One day he forgot to
Every mo
take his oil
o paints witth him. Rosaa darted out to buy two ppennies worrth of cherries, and spennt the
day paintting a picturee of them on
n a small disccarded canvvas. Impresseed by her skiill, her fatherr
declared her ready fo
or the next sttep in her artt education. She would ccopy paintings at the Louuvre,
the nation
nal art museeum in Francce.

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Barely fo
ourteen, Rosa was so exccited her firsst day at the museum thaat her hand trembled likke a
leaf. Wiithin a few months
m
her copies began to sell. Rosaas proud fatther told herr that if she kkept
working,, she would someday
s
surrpass the mo
ost celebratedd woman arttist in Francee, portrait paainter
Elisabeth
h Vige-Lebrrun.

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Rosa did
dnt want to paint
p
portraitts of people.. Cant I bee famous for painting aniimals? she
asked herr father. . . .

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Animals All Around


d

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Rosas faather set her next taskd


drawing livee animals. Shhe visited faarms to obserrve and sketcch
cows, sheeep, goats, and
a horses. Pet
P chickens,, ducks, quaiil, and rabbitts crowded tthe family sttudio.
She paintted animals again and ag
gain, eager to
o make them
m as life-likee as she could.

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At age niineteen, Rosa felt ready to submit tw


wo paintings to the Salonn, an art show
w sponsoredd by
the Frencch governmeent. Salon ju
uries rarely ch
hose works bby women aartists, so Roosa was thrillled
when botth paintings were acceptted. . . .

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Every yeear, she exhib


bited more animal
a
paintiings and scuulptures. Crittics began too notice her w
work.
In 1848 she
s won a firrst prize for a painting of red oxen. E
Even better, she receivedd a commisssion
to do a work
w
on the subject
s
of plo
oughing.

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Here wass a chance to


o do a truly monumental
m
painting! R
Rosa spent m
most of a yearr planning annd
drawing sketches forr it. Ploughiing in the Niivernais dreew much nottice. The thrree teams of oxen
trudging across the eight-foot can
nvas looked so realistic tthat a farmerr stopped in front of it annd
exclaimeed, Those arre oxen! And
d that is plou
ughing!

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Yet Rosaa dreamed off an even larrger, more drramatic painnting. For moonths, she skketched horses
being traded at a Pariis market an
nd workhorsees pulling citty buses. Too avoid attraccting attentioon,
she woree mens cloth
hing. (She haad to apply for
f permissioon from the P
Paris police to do so!) She
chose a huge
h
canvas for the paintting, one mo
ore than sixteeen feet longg and eight ffeet high.

S e c ur e M a t e r i a l s . D o n o t c o p y wi t hho u t e x p r e s s p e r m i s s i o n .
8

TC
CAP Gra
ades 677 Writingg
Practtice Taskk II
Text 2
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The Legion of Hono


or

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At the Saalon in 1853, The Horsee Fair creatted a sensatioon. Critics aapplauded heer skillful reaalism
and the paintings
p
sw
wirling harmo
ony of colorr and line. Tooday this fam
mous paintinng hangs in tthe
Metropollitan Museum
m in New York
Y
City. When
W
you stannd in front oof it, one art hhistorian writes,
you can
n almost hearr the shoutin
ng and the sn
norting and ffeel the groun
und shake unnder the assauult of
the hoovees.

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Rosa Bon
nheur painteed animals fo
or the rest off her life. Heer paintings ssold widely. With her
earnings,, she purchassed a small chteau,
c
wheere she kept a menageriee of animals to pose for hher.
In 1865, Rosa Bonheeur became the
t first wom
man artist to receive Frannces highestt award, the
Cross of the Legion of
o Honoraa fitting tribu
ute for an arttist who wouuld not let w
worries aboutt
money, prejudice
p
agaainst women
n, or even a stampede
s
staand in her waay.

Childress, Diana. A Lifee Painting Anim


mals. Highlig
ghts for Childreen. Jul 2003, V
Vol. 58 Issue 7,, p. 8.
Copyright 2003. Highllights for Child
dren, Inc., Colu
umbus, Ohio. A
All rights reserrved. Used by ppermission.

S e c ur e M a t e r i a l s . D o n o t c o p y wi t hho u t e x p r e s s p e r m i s s i o n .
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