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Valmy and Léa
Valmy and Léa
Brush and brown wash, heightened with white gouache, over graphite
Support: Beige wove paper, laid down on cardboard
Sheet: 36 x 51.7 cm (14 3/16 x 20 3/8 in.)
Bequest of Muriel Butkin 2008.407
A forerunner to the cabaret, the café-concert was an irresistible subject for artists working in fin-de-siècle Paris. Here, the performers are illuminated by the unnatural glow of gas footlights, while the musicians in the orchestra, seen mostly from behind, are tucked in the shadowy foreground. The neck of the double base extends above the crowd, drawing the viewer’s eye to the climactic can-can.
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