Extremely intimate in scale, this image offers a snapshot of daily life. Prowling on a balcony, a cat peers into a pot of planted flowers possibly looking for a little mischief. "Compositionally, this is one of Manet's most subtle combinations of complex and simple. The silhouetting of the flat area of the cat's shape against the "busy" background presents some visual confusion, for the spectator's attention is often distracted from the simple, easily grasped shape of the cat and of the railings to the more intricate lines and rhythms of the flowers and the diamond shapes between the railings. Manet has thus reversed what is a more normal figure-ground relationship (i.e. with the more complex description of form being in the foreground and the simple more broadly handled forms behind)…" (Harris, 198).
Created in 1869, this work is signed in the plate by Edouard Manet (1832-1883) in the lower left hand corner of the work. Posthunus edition.
The etching measure 8 by 6 inches in a professional framed 13 by 15.75 inches . In good condition ( NOT EXMAINED outside of the frame )
Documented and illustrated in:
1. Harris, Jean, Edouard Manet The Graphic Work, A Catalogue Raisonné, 1990, listed as cat no 65 on pgs 198-201.
Shipped Unframed for International Buyers.
Édouard Manet (23 January 1832 — 30 April 1883) was a French painter printmaker ,. One of the first 19th-century artists to approach modern-life subjects, he was a pivotal figure in the transition from Realism to Impressionism.
His early masterworks, The Luncheon on the Grass (Le déjeuner sur l'herbe) and Olympia, engendered great controversy and served as rallying points for the young painters who would create Impressionism. Today, these are considered watershed paintings that mark the genesis of modern art.
Born into an upper class household with strong political connections, Manet rejected the future originally envisioned for him, only to become engrossed in the world of painting. The last 20 years of Manet's life saw him form bonds with other great artists of the time, and develop his own style that would be heralded as innovative and serve as a major influence for future painters.
Édouard Manet was born in Paris on 23 January 1832, to an affluent and well connected family. His mother, Eugénie-Desirée Fournier, was the daughter of a diplomat and goddaughter of the Swedish crown prince, Charles Bernadotte, from whom the current Swedish monarchs are descended. His father, Auguste Manet, was a French judge who expected Édouard to pursue a career in law. His uncle, Charles Fournier, encouraged him to pursue painting and often took young Manet to the Louvre In 1841 he enrolled at secondary school, the Collège Rollin. In 1845, at the advice of his uncle, Manet enrolled in a special course of drawing where he met Antonin Proust, future Minister of Fine Arts and subsequent life-long friend.
At his father's suggestion, in 1848 he sailed on a training vessel to Rio de Janeiro. After Manet twice failed the examination to join the Navy the elder Manet relented to his son's wishes to pursue an art education. From 1850 to 1856, Manet studied under the academic painter, Thomas Couture. In his spare time, Manet copied the old masters in the Louvre.
From 1853 to 1856 he visited Germany, Italy, and the Netherlands, during which time he absorbed the influences of the Dutch painter Frans Hals, as well as the Spanish artists, Diego Velázquez and Francisco José de Goya.
In 1856, Manet opened his own studio. His style in this period was characterized by loose brush strokes, simplification of details and the suppression of transitional tones. Adopting the current style of realism initiated by Gustave Courbet, he painted The Absinthe Drinker (1858–59) and other contemporary subjects such as beggars, singers, Gypsies, people in cafés, and bullfights. After his early years, he rarely painted religious, mythological, or historical subjects; examples include his Christ Mocked, now in the Art Institute of Chicago, andChrist with Angels, in the Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York.
Art (paintings, prints, frames)