As an artist I can’t believe that we know when we create a master piece, or if we are creating a piece of art that will be display in museums. Unless a group of painters decide to do so in advance, to make a statement or to show a specific trend in history. 

Fashion in Impressionism is a marketing tool that curators invented, and it is a good idea by itself, These Impressionistic  painters created their art work from what they saw around them, and not specifically for fashion. Every piece of art was an  experimental piece, hoping to deliver the essence of what the artist felt inside––for sure they didn't think about a fashion exhibit at museum of the Art Institute. 

It is the curators who came up with the idea for this exhibition, and maybe they saw something new that can speak to as many people in our society. Many curators and museums officials give life to exhibitions that will guaranteed additional income and revenues, an income that every museum needs for its continued success. It's all about making money. Many items were created specifically for that exhibit, and they are sold at the gift store to increase revenues.

It is chic to bring fashion to the 21st century as a subject of beauty, and I'm all for it, if the curators present this as such. I always ask myself, will the curator put on an exhibit of full size fat women which was an excepted trend in the 19th century and men thought that being fat was beautiful… Do you really thing a show of fat women as a core to an exhibit will sell as many tickets as fashion would?… I don't think so, but whom am I to say? After all it's all about the marketing approach the curators will take, and what kind of tools they will use to ensure the success of the exhibition.. 

Just so you know, Impressionism is my favorite period in art,  I will always cherish the art and the artists who brought to life the beauty of their time. So enjoy!
David Cohen



From Press release:
Impressionism, Fashion, and Modernity, which opened in Paris in October 2012, just opened at the Art Institute this summer as the final stop on its world tour. Organized by the Art Institute of Chicago, The Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York, and the Musée d’Orsay, Paris, the exhibition is wonderful and includes large-scale works by luminaries such as Gustave Caillebotte, Edgar Degas, Édouard Manet, Claude Monet, Pierre-Auguste Renoir, Georges Seurat, Alfred Stevens, and James Tissot. For the presentation of the exhibition in Chicago, the Art Institute collaborated with international opera director Robert Carsen to conceive an immersive installation unlike any other presented at the museum. 

“Impressionism, Fashion, and Modernity is precisely the type of exhibition that the Art Institute does best,” said Douglas Druick, President and Eloise W. Martin Director of the museum. “With pioneering scholarship, the exhibition brings fresh perspectives to landmark works of art of the period and infuses them, and their historical era, with a new vibrancy and immediacy. Impressionism, Fashion, and Modernity is also a testament to our close relationship with our colleagues in Paris and New York. It would not have been possible without their generosity and collegiality, particularly Guy Cogeval, the president and director of the Musée d’Orsay.” 

“Working with paintings of this caliber is, of course, thrilling for a curator,” said Gloria Groom, David and Mary Winton Green Curator of Nineteenth-Century European Painting and Sculpture at the Art Institute of Chicago. “But equally exciting is to be able to add dimensions to the works of art by the presentation of period dresses and accessories, many of which, thanks to exhibition curator Susan Stein, were lent by multiple departments at The Metropolitan Museum of Art. Establishing the conversation between the paintings and actual artifacts—dresses, gloves, corsets, parasols—and working with Robert Carsen on their presentation have both made this exhibition a singular experience for the Art Institute.”

The paintings are brought to life with a judicious selection of period dresses, shoes, hats, fans, parasols, corsets, photographs, and fashion plates that vividly illustrate the booming consumer culture of the time. Dialogues between paintings and the garments depicted in them—such as Albert Bartholomé’s In the Conservatory (c. 1881) and the purple and white summer dress worn by Madame Bartholomé or Claude Monet’s Camille (1866) and an English promenade dress (1865/68)—not only underscore the intimate relationship between fashion and painting but also indicate how artists used, manipulated, and transformed fashion as a platform for their groundbreaking explorations. Visitors to the exhibition will experience galleries that examine burgeoning middle-class consumerism in the late 19th century, domestic portraits, fashion en plein air, under-fashion, photographs and fashion plates, men’s fashion, spaces of modern life, and evolving silhouettes as seen, for example, in the shift from the crinoline to the bustle.
 
Impressionism, Fashion, and Modernity features iconic paintings by Impressionist artists as well as work by notable contemporaries James Tissot, Alfred Stevens, Carolus-Duran, and Jean Béraud. Many of the paintings, on loan from museums around the world, are rarely seen outside of Europe. Conversely, beloved works in the Art Institute’s of Chicago’s permanent collection, most notably Gustave Caillebotte’s Paris Street; Rainy Day (1877), will return home to Chicago, joining Georges Seurat’s monumental A Sunday on La Grande Jatte—1884 (1884–86), which was not displayed as part of the exhibition in Paris or New York.

Fashion Plates: 19th-Century Fashion Illustrations 
July 2–September 9, 2013   Ryerson and Burnham Libraries (Closed on Saturdays and Sundays) 

Exhibition Surcharge: There will be a $15 surcharge ($12 for students and seniors) for Illinois residents visiting the exhibition during the museum’s Free Thursday Evenings. 

Special Information 
The Art Institute of Chicago will be offering extended and special hours throughout the summer. 

Friday Evening Viewings: The exhibition will be open until 8:00 p.m. on Friday, June 28, and Friday, July 5. Only the exhibition (not the museum) will be open for those hours. Additional Friday evening viewings may be added throughout the exhibition, so please check the website for information on extended hours. General admission charges apply. Visitors should use the Michigan Avenue entrance.

Saturday Evening Viewings: The exhibition only (not the museum) will be open late for special viewings on select Saturday nights throughout the summer: July 13, August 3, August 24, August 31, and September 14. These evenings will be special occasions in which visitors are encouraged to dress up according to a specific theme. Check www.artic.edu for details as the special Saturday evenings draw near. General admission charges apply. Visitors should use the Michigan Avenue entrance. 
 


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