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I'm a native French speaker and the following is translated from French:

A production still in which the beauty of the natural elements and colours evoke the Renoir of A Day in the Country (1936) and Picnic on the Grass (1959).

This is indeed something you can say in French: a person's name is preceded by the definite article and followed by an indication of "context" (here: two films directed by Jean Renoir), meaning Renoir's style as can be appreciated in those works, or the way Renoir would do things at the time.

The English translation (not mine) is literal and doesn't sound correct to me. Could you give me your opinion (and ideas to improve it)?

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I had to read it twice. I would like a comma: A production still, –  mplungjan Jun 20 '13 at 11:27

1 Answer 1

up vote 5 down vote accepted

This is fine. It has the connotation you describe - the Renoir as exemplified by those works.

An alternative "...evoke Renoir's A day..." would be possible, but would suggest these two specific works, rather than the group of works of similar style.

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Thanks very much. I've learned something. –  Glauber Rocha Jun 20 '13 at 11:01
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Articles (the, a, an) can be used with proper nouns in some cases where referring to a particular instance or example of that noun. –  TrevorD Jun 20 '13 at 12:18
    
Or, as here I believe, a particular incarnation (cf 'the young Turner'). –  Edwin Ashworth Jun 20 '13 at 19:19

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