Le Moulin Rouge

Object Details

Title:

Le Moulin Rouge

Artist/Maker:

Pierre Bonnard (French, 1867 - 1947)

Culture:

French

Date:

1891

Medium:

Pastel and charcoal

Dimensions:

54.6 × 48.7 cm (21 1/2 × 19 3/16 in.)

Copyright:

© 2015 Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York / ADAGP, Paris

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Pressed tight against the picture plane, a young woman wearing a large hat lifts her billowing underskirts. With her foreshortened, black-stockinged leg raised to the height of her shoulders, she performs the famous chahut, a popular dance of Paris's renowned nightclubs. Neon yellow pastel outlines her delicate profile, hair, and hands, evoking the glow of stage lights. The viewer looks into her petticoat to read--as if part of the swirling lace--the words Tous les soirs Mercredi Et Samedi Grande Fete (Every night/Big Party on Wednesdays and Saturdays) highlighted in white pastel. Behind her shoulders, male members of the audience watch from the left.

The background pulsates with color and movement: silhouetted against a purple ground, the words Moulin Rouge (Red Mill) in greenish pastel seem to expand outward toward the crossed red lines decorated with peach-colored balls, which indicate the illuminated blades of the windmill. This emblem decorated the facade of the brassiest nightclub in Montmarte, the Moulin Rouge; Pierre Bonnard made this highly worked pastel drawing as a finished study for a poster advertising the club.

Provenance
-

Pierre Bonnard, French, 1867 - 1947, estate of the artist

-

Private Collection

-

Wildenstein & Co. (New York)

Exhibitions
Paris, Capitale des Arts (April 28 to July 14, 1989) (catalogue by S. Azias de Turenne)
  • Didier Imbert Fine Art S.A. (Neuchâtel), April 28 to July 14, 1989
Recent Additions to the Drawings Collection (August 3 to October 1, 1999)
  • The J. Paul Getty Museum at the Getty Center (Los Angeles), August 3 to October 1, 1999
To Create a Living Art: 19th Century Drawings (May 1 to July 15, 2001)
  • The J. Paul Getty Museum at the Getty Center (Los Angeles), May 1 to July 15, 2001
Defining Modernity: European Drawings 1800-1900 (June 5 to September 9, 2007)
  • The J. Paul Getty Museum at the Getty Center (Los Angeles), June 5 to September 9, 2007
A Light Touch: Exploring Humor in Drawing (September 23 to December 7, 2008)
  • The J. Paul Getty Museum at the Getty Center (Los Angeles), September 23 to December 7, 2008
Degas: Russian Dancers and the Art of Pastel (May 19 to October 11, 2015)
  • The J. Paul Getty Museum at the Getty Center (Los Angeles), May 19 to October 11, 2015