Short Exhibition Review on Manet: Portraying Life at Royal Academy


Manet exhibition is going to finish on SUNDAY 14TH APRIL. Of course, it is going to be last day of half term; you’re asking whether you should you see it or not. Well, here are my:


Berthe Morisot with a Bouquet of Violets, 1872

Berthe Morisot with a Bouquet of Violets, 1872

Go during the late evenings after 6:00pm. { UPDATE: Opening til Midnight!} The immense crowds of people going during the daytime did ruin and frustrate the experience for me. Don’t forgot to have plenty of water on you. It can get incredibly hot.

I enjoyed the last rooms of the exhibition, the large-scale map pinpointing Manet’s significant events, as well as the painting of ‘Berthe Morisot with a Bou’ hung beside the another painting of Berthe Morisot grieving from her father’s death, wearing similar dark attire.

I don’t think it portrayed life in sense of his reflected surroundings but more a mirror to himself and whom his associates are. I preferred the grand settings  of Parisian life Manet paints.


Music in the Tuileries Gardens, 1862

So the decision not to display his famous works, such as Olympia  or Le déjeuner sur l’herbe  was so disappointing. Not only not to see it but it would break up the tiresome and repetitiveness of the curatorial decision.

Having George Bellows as the accompanying exhibition was the perfect juxtaposition to Manet.  The composed pale flesh of the bourgeois Paris to the colour and expressive gritty streets of USA. Lovers of Manet will go and see it. I think I will wait for the retrospective.

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