129.8 x 161.9 cm
National Gallery, London, UK
Because the jury at the Academie de peinture et de sculpture would not accept his work, Tiger in a Tropical Storm, Rouseau had to enter it under a different name, Surprise, at the Salon de Independants, which was open to all artists. The painting was not a smash hit, as it received mixed reviews, ranging from ridicule at the childish naiveté of the painting, to the understanding and acclaim at its technical complexity, and with it he received his first recognition as an accomplished artist. Although there are tales (which may have been spread by himself) that Rousseau had studied the flora and fauna of the jungle during his travels in Mexico, he never left France, and learned all he knew of the jungle from botanical gardens, textbooks, and oral accounts.