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Victorine Meurent

Victorine Meurent was a painter, but is better known today as Manet's favorite model. Art historians have long held that she was a prostitute, who had a casual sexual relationship with Manet and who died of alcoholism at a young age. The truth is, Meurent exhibited in six Salons, some of which Manet's work was rejected. As well, it is unlikely that she ever slept with Manet, as he died in his 50s from Syphillis, which was then uncurable, and she lived over 20 years with a woman. Victorine continued to paint throughout her life until her death at the age of 83.

Reminder! Visual Analysis/Museum Paper due on Wednesday, April 12!!!
Edouard Manet, Victorine Meurent in the
Costume of an Espada, 1862.











Edmonia Lewis, The Death of Cleopatra, 1876.












Edmonia Lewis, The Death of Cleopatra, 1876.
William Wetmore Story, Cleopatra, 1869.











Death of Cleopatra

Artemisia Gentileschi, Cleopatra, date unknown.
Reginald Arthur, Death of Cleopatra, c. 1914.











Photography invented 1827 and by the 1850s had become accessible to many
Photography provided an open door to women interested in the arts because:
  • It had no canon, history or rules to adhere to
  • Photos were not initially considered art, so photographic practice was open to everyone (who could afford the equipment) without restrictions
  • It did not reqiure formal training (such as painting & sculpting)
  • Because it was considered a hobby, photographers were allowed great freedom of expression

Not surprisingly, women were among the first to argue the artistic merits of the photograph

The Kodak Girl, Australian Photographic Review, 1911.











Lady Clementina Hawarden
1822 - 1865


Lady Clementina Hawarden, Photographic Study, Early 1860s.











Lady Clementina Hawarden, Photographic Study, c. 1863.
Lady Clementina Hawarden, Daughters on a Balcony, c. 1865.








Isabelle Grace

Lady Clementina Hawarden,
Clementina Maude by Window, c. 1862.
Lady Clementina Hawarden,
Isabella Grace and Clementina Maude, c. 1863.











Lady Clementina Hawarden, Clementina Maude, c. 1862.











In 1861, the age of consent was raised
from 10 to 12 in England
While there is no evidence that Hawarden was deliberately exploring the topic of adolescent sexuality, the popular concern is arguably evident in her images
Lady Clementina Hawarden, Isabella Grace and Clementina Maude, c. 1863.











Julia Margaret Cameron
1815 - 1879


Rosebud Garden of Girls

Julia Margaret Cameron, Rosebud Garden of Girls, 1868.











Julia Margaret Cameron, Charles Darwin, 1868, printed 1875.











Lewis Carroll said "hers are all taken purposely out of focus- some are very picturesque- some merely hideous- however, she talks of them as if they were triumphs of art." - Guerrilla Girls

"What is focus- and who has the right to say what is the legitimate focus? My aspirations are to ennoble photography and to secure for it the character and uses of High Art by combining the real and the ideal and sacrificing nothing of Truth by all possible devotion to Poetry and beauty." - Julia Margaret Cameron
Julia Margaret Cameron, Sappho, 1865.











Julia Margaret Cameron, Ellen Terry at Age 16, 1864.
John Singer Sargent, Ellen Terry as Lady Macbeth, 1889.