Delacroix at The Met Fifth Avenue, September 17, 2018 – January 6, 2019
“French painter Eugène Delacroix (1798–1863) was one of the greatest creative figures of the 19th century. Through his choice of daring subjects and compositions, a vibrant palette, and bold brushwork, he set into motion a cascade of innovations that changed the course of art. As Van Gogh wrote in 1885: ‘What I find so fine about Delacroix is precisely that he reveals the liveliness of things, and the expression and the movement, that he is utterly beyond the paint.’ Although Delacroix is celebrated as the embodiment of the Romantic era, much remains to be understood about his life and prolific career. At The Metropolitan Museum of Art, Delacroix is the first comprehensive retrospective in North America devoted to the artist. Visitors will discover a protean genius who continues to set the bar for artists today.
Encompassing 12 galleries, the exhibition will provide a largely chronological overview of the three main phases of Delacroix’s four-decade career. The first phase centers on his formative years, from 1822 to 1834, dominated by a thirst for novelty, fame, and freedom. The second focuses on 1835 to 1855, marked by his exploration of historical themes informed by large mural commissions, as well as his triumph at the Exposition Universelle of 1855. The third and final phase follows Delacroix’s growing interest in nature and the creative role of memory, up until his death in 1863.” — The Met
“If by Romanticism one means the free manifestation of my personal impressions, my aversion to the models copied in the schools, and my loathing for academic formulas, I must confess that not only am I Romantic, but I was so at the age of fifteen.” — Delacroix
The Combat of the Giaour and Hassan, 1826. Oil on canvas. 23 1/2 × 28 7/8 in. (59.6 × 73.4 cm). The Art Institute of Chicago, Gift of Bertha Palmer Thorne, Rose Movius Palmer, Mr. and Mrs. Arthur M. Wood, and Mr. and Mrs. Gordon Palmer (1962.966). Photo credit: The Art Institute of Chicago / Art Resource, NY
Delacroix is organized by Asher Miller, Associate Curator in the Department of European Paintings at The Met, in collaboration with Sébastien Allard, Director of the Department of Paintings at the Musée du Louvre, and Côme Fabre, Curator in the Department of Paintings at the Musée du Louvre.