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“Views of Carmen”

Goya – Courbet – Manet – Nadar – Picasso



Taking its cue from Edouard Manet’s well-known painting Angelina (ca. 1864–65), the exhibition at the Landesmuseum Joanneum in Graz takes a fresh look at Carmen and the Carmen stereotype. With the help of major works by Manet, Gustave Courbet, Francisco de Goya, and others, “Views of Carmen” probes the many facets of this enormously influential figure in an attempt to reach beyond the myth and arrive at a new interpretation. Views of Carmen represented in the exhibition range widely, encompassing not only paintings by well-known French artists, but also all thirty-three prints from the first edition of Goya’s Tauromaquie (The Bull Fight), loaned by the prints and drawings department of the ETH, Zurich, and works on the subject of Spain and Carmen from Madrid (Carmen Thyssen-Bornemisza Collection), Philadelphia, Seville, Vienna (Albertina and Nationalbibliothek), and Zurich. In this way French attitudes to Carmen and Spain are accompanied by views from inside Spain. To expand the scope of these “Views of Carmen”, and to demythologize a cliché-ridden subject, the exhibition includes a number of nineteenth-century photographs. These comprise images of “gypsies” (as they were called until quite recently) and a striking set of pictures taken by Ludwig Angerer in Bucharest. The exhibition closes with works by contemporary artists Aura Rosenberg and Anne Sauser-Hall that prompt reconsideration of its theme. 


The exhibition is the result of a unique collaboration between the museum in Graz and the Musée d’Orsay and the Musée Picasso in Paris. Artists featured in addition to those already mentioned include José Jimenez Aranda, Rafael Benjumea, Guys Constantin, Edgar Degas, Gustave Doré, Antoine Dumas, Armand Leleux, Félix Nadar, Pablo Picasso, and José Garcia Ramos. The catalogue, to be published by Verlag Walter König, Cologne, will contain contributions by Elisabeth Bronfen (“The Ultimate Sacrifice”) and Thomas Macho (“The Carmen Myth”), and others.


Blicke auf Carmen / seeing carmen

Verlag Walther König


zur Ausstellung


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