Monday, 5 December 2022

Reminding you about Manet



Manet, the French artist – not to be confused with Monet who was a friend of his – was born in 1832.  He didn't have a very long life – he died at the age of 51.  But he wasn't a struggling artist either – he came from a well off family and lived off his inheritance.



Manet was what the French call a 'boulevardier' – ie he enjoyed sauntering around town, dressed very nattily, and hung out with his artistic mates in cafes. 



He was a disappointed artist during his lifetime though.  He struggled for all his career to get establishment recognition and acclaim but rather received much ridicule.  This is hard to understand from today's perspective when he is generally recognised as one of the great artists of all time. 


I have put his 2 most famous paintings – Le Dejeuner sur L'Herbe and Olympia right at the bottom of this post – they do contain nudity so don't scroll down if you don't want to see them.  But, actually I think I like other paintings of his better. 



Manet was one of the first painters to depict real life instead of historical scenes.  He married a Dutch piano teacher. 


He was a friend of the Impressionists but always insisted that he wasn't one himself. 


He became famous quite shortly after his death in 1883. 



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