A unique insight into the work of one of the most radical painters of the 19th century and the creative circles of Parisian society in which he moved is offered in Manet: Portraying Life, the first major UK exhibition to showcase Edouard Manet’s portraiture.
The show, which highlights Manet’s portraiture, opens at London’s Royal Academy of Arts on Saturday (Jan 26. It examines the relationship between his portrait painting and his scenes of modern life and is already set to break records. By casting his sitters as actors in his genre scenes, Manet guaranteed the authenticity of the figures that populate his paintings and asserted a new, more potent relationship between Realism and Modernity.
Manet: Portraying Life includes over 50 paintings spanning the career of this archetypal modern artist together with a selection of pastels and contemporary photographs. It brings together works from both public and private collections across Europe, Asia and the USA.