Sunday, 27 January 2013

Manet: Portraying Life - Royal Academy

Edouard Manet, Portrait of Stéphane Mallarmé, 1876
Manet: Portraying Life is at the Royal Academy of Arts until 14 April 2013.
This exhibition contains some wonderful paintings (my favourites are illustrated here); but, as a whole, the show is a little overstretched and is padded out with a number of minor works.
Music in the Tuileries Gardens is, rather oddly, given an entire gallery to itself: making this painting the centrepiece of this paying exhibition seems a little ironic given that, as Adrian Searle points out in his review, usually it can be seen for free in the National Gallery, down the road.
A flawed Manet exhibition is, nevertheless, a wonderful exhibition and well worth seeing.
Read reviews by Laura Cumming and Adrian Searle and an article, Manet's Portraits: the Artist on the Knife-Edge of Photography, by Philip Hensher.
Edouard Manet, Luncheon in the Studio, 1868
Edouard Manet, Portrait of Emile Zola, 1867-8
Edouard Manet, Portrait of Zacharie Astruc, 1864
Edouard Manet, Berthe Morisot with Black Hat and Violets, 1872
Edouard Manet, The Railway, 1873