This print, Les Courses (‘The Races’), shows Manet’s drawing at its most vigorous. The viewpoint is dramatic. We find ourselves in the middle of the racetrack with the horses galloping straight towards us. The railing slopes away at an unnerving angle as the lower right-hand corner dissolves into furious scribbling.
“Manet in Black” is on exhibit at the Museum of Fine Arts Boston beginning in February 2012. Edouard Manet’s friend, the poet Charles Baudelaire, described black as the color of the nineteenth century. Manet was a master in the use of black, asserting his bold and subtle imprint on a range of subjects. This exhibition celebrates Manet’s brilliant achievements as a graphic artist. Known as the painter of modern life and the father of Impressionism, Manet was also an exceptionally gifted printmaker and draftsman, among the most daring and innovative of the nineteenth century.
Drawn primarily from the MFA’s collection and featuring a selection of some 50 prints and drawings by Manet and related artists—including Rembrandt and Degas—the exhibition spans a variety of subjects, techniques, and styles from throughout Manet’s career.
Bringing forth fresh perspectives on Manet’s art by established scholars, Therese Dolan’s new book – Perspectives on Manet – places this compelling and elusive artist’s painted oeuvre within a broader cultural context, and links his artistic preoccupations with literary and musical currents. Dolan’s collection investigates the range of Manet’s art in the context of his time and considers how his vision has shaped later interpretations. Specific essays explore the relationship between Manet and Whistler; Emile Zola’s attitude toward the artist; Manet’s engagement with moral and ethical questions in his paintings; and the heritage of Charles Baudelaire and Clement Greenberg in critical responses to Manet. Therese Dolan is Professor of Art History and Women’s Studies at Tyler School of Art, Temple University, USA.
Inspired by last years list of promising exhibits, here are some suggestions for 2012:
- Boston – “Manet in Black”, Museum of Fine Arts, February 18 to October 28,
- Chicago – “Roy Lichtenstein“, The Art Institute of Chicago, May 16 to September 3
- Atlanta – “KAWS: Down Time”, High Museum of Art, February 18 to May 20
- New York – “Keith Haring: 1978–1982”, Brooklyn Museum, March 16–July 8
- Philadelphia – “Van Gogh Up Close“, Philadelphia Museum of Art, February 1 to May 6
- Washington, DC – “Annie Leibovitz: Pilgrimage“, American Art Museum, January 20 to May 20
- Washington, DC – “Picasso’s Drawings, 1890–1921: Reinventing Tradition“, National Gallery of Art, January 29 to May 6
- Cincinnati – “Spectacle: The Music Video”, Contemporary Arts Center, March 3 to September 3
- Minneapolis – “Lifelike”, Walker Art Center, February 25 to May 27
- Ridgefield, CT – “Xu Bing: Tobacco Project”, The Aldrich Contemporary Art Museum, Jan 29 to June 10
- London – “David Hockney RA: A Bigger Picture”, Royal Academy of Arts, January 21 to April 9
- London – “Lucien Freud Portraits“, National Portrait Gallery, February 9 to May 27
- London – “Mondrian and Nicholson in Parallel“, The Courtauld Gallery, February 16 to May 20
- San Francisco – “Mark Bradford”, Museum of Modern Art, February 18 to June 17
- Santa Fe – “Jaune Quick-To-See Smith: Landscapes Of An American Modernist”, Georgia O’Keeffe Museum, Jan 27 to April 29
- Seattle – “Gauguin Polynesia”, Seattle Art Museum, February 9 to April 29
Support the arts! Visit a museum in your area or in a city you will visit this year… it is enriching, educational and inspiring. As Albert Einstein said, “Logic will get you from A to B. Imagination will take you everywhere.”