Berthe Morisot comes into her own
February 9, 2024 4:17 AM   Subscribe

"It is almost impossible to believe that these paintings have been overlooked. The qualifying statements people often make about their so-called domesticity and how Morisot did the best she could within a limited sphere, even when meant as a defence of the work, are entirely unconvincing: what is ‘the domestic’ but the core of life, of eros, and of work?" posted by cupcakeninja (16 comments total) 33 users marked this as a favorite
wow, an impressionistic painter of women that doesn't reek of stalking! thank you so much for sharing this! i love her
posted by seanmpuckett at 5:06 AM on February 9 [2 favorites]

Amazing art, thanks for posting! The only disappointment was that the exhibition tour was a few years ago so I'll likely never get to see these in person.
posted by TheophileEscargot at 5:32 AM on February 9 [1 favorite]

TheophileEscargot - there's a Morisot exhibit in Paris through March!
posted by ersatzkat at 6:00 AM on February 9 [3 favorites]

Thanks! Will have to see if I can make it over!
posted by TheophileEscargot at 6:12 AM on February 9

Another knockout article. Thank you for posting.
posted by effluvia at 7:05 AM on February 9 [1 favorite]

Great article, and glorious work. I've seen a few of her paintings in galleries here and there, and they were always as good as the other Impressionist canvases around them; I guess I assumed that she hadn't painted much, and that that was why there weren't more on show. That snippet about "an astounding proportion of [her] most important work" still being in private hands explains a lot, and sexism would explain the rest (what's the bet that even some of her paintings in public collections are sitting in storage rather than being on display). It's good to learn that her peers were so supportive of her work, and celebrated it after her death. The fault lies with posterity, but fortunately that can change.
posted by rory at 7:43 AM on February 9 [11 favorites]

I saw at least one of her paintings at the Orsay last month, among many by her male contemporaries. It was interesting to note her skillfulness, compared to many do I say this...didn't paint human faces very well.

Morisot's works were well-executed as well as beautiful -- really great stuff.
posted by wenestvedt at 7:50 AM on February 9 [2 favorites]

I saw the exhibition in Dulwich last year which was pretty good.
posted by Phanx at 8:20 AM on February 9

The art world is still a man's world unfortunately...
posted by Czjewel at 10:13 AM on February 9

I love her work! Thank you for making this post. She does not get her flowers enough for her talents, much like Karin Larsson (Swedish interior designer) does not get her flowers either.
posted by jeanmari at 12:01 PM on February 9 [1 favorite]

We saw the full Berthe Morisot exhibit at the Orsay the last time we were in Paris and it was glorious, so lovingly put together and clearly admiring of her work, deservedly so. I did not know much about her and was so happy to see all her work together and learn more about her life. We studied so few women artists at all in my Western art history classes in high school and university.
posted by hurdy gurdy girl at 12:22 PM on February 9 [4 favorites]

> The art world is still a man's world unfortunately...

> We studied so few women artists at all in my Western art history classes in high school and university.

The recent book The Story of Art Without Men by art historian Katy Hessel gives brief but well-researched biographies of 100+ underrecognized female artists — including Berthe Morisot — and puts them in the context of their times. It made me want to look up more information about almost all of them! Recommended for all art fans. I just returned it to my library, but it's probably one I want to get my own copy of.
posted by lisa g at 1:28 PM on February 9 [6 favorites]

I always think of this "View of Paris from the Trocadero" first when I think of her paintings, maybe because it's rare to see such open space in her paintings and it's a nice surprise. And because when I saw the painting in person, the colors were so delicate and fresh, subsequent digital reproductions I found on the web never did it justice, so it's indeed important to meet artwork in person when one can.
posted by of strange foe at 1:58 PM on February 9 [3 favorites]

This is amazing, thank you! Those late experimental paintings that appear unfinished are so ahead of their time. And her central position in the art world of her time - which happily was at least acknowledged during her life, unlike so many other women - is such a shock, given how much she was overlooked for the next century. I particularly liked this part, after a note about how the Impressionists "worked quite intimately next to one another, often in pairs, and were one another’s teachers":

Morisot’s half in some of these pairings has received scant critical and curatorial attention and the result is that our understanding of Manet, Degas, Monet and Renoir has also been impoverished.

It's marvelous that she's finally getting recognition again - enough so that I can finally learn about her, too.
posted by mediareport at 6:24 AM on February 10 [3 favorites]

The Impressionist Art of Seeing and Being Seen (great explanation of Morisot's "In England" from NYT's interactive art series - it opens in a private tab for me).
posted by blue shadows at 6:59 PM on February 10 [2 favorites]

I was wondering whether this was the exhibition that came through Dallas a couple of years back and it turns out that it was. We really enjoyed it, and I felt like I learned a lot about her from it. Also from the above-the-fold link, so thanks for posting.
posted by gentlyepigrams at 7:35 PM on February 10 [1 favorite]

« Older Numbats in the wild doing better than expected   |   Ding-Dong! Cha-Ching! Newer »

You are not currently logged in. Log in or create a new account to post comments.