Monday, July 22, 2013

Berthe Morisot

Eduard Manet "Le Ropas" , 1870 (portrait of Berthe Morisot )

The above painting appears in the
"Impressionism, Fashion, and Modernity" exhibit
now at the Art Institute of Chicago

But even more exciting
are the seven paintings
by Morisot herself (1841 - 1895)
comprising the largest exhibition of her work there
since the museum gave her a solo show in 1925

This is the 1879 piece from the museum's permanent collection
and I admit that I've never given it the respect it deserves.

It's frilly girlishness just doesn't fit well in a room
dominated by the masculinity of  all the Impressionist boys.

Manet "Girl Before a Mirror", 1876

But placed immediately beside a painting
of a similar pose by Manet,
as it is in this exhibit, 
you can see that
Morisot is  not looking at a woman's world,
she's living in one.

And it's so well expressed
by the light, feathery, silvery qualities
she picked up from her mentor, Jean Baptiste Corot

Two Sisters on a Couch, 1869

(one of whom is the artist herself)

Woman and Child on the Balcony; 1872

Young Woman in a Ball Gown, 1879

Edouard Manet "Portrait of Berthe Morisot", 1873

There's two portraits of Morisot by Manet in this show,
the above is a watercolor in the A.I.C. permanent collection.

He must have been as fascinated by her
as I am.


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