The National Gallery’s big Centenary blockbuster “Toulouse-Lautrec, Paris & The Moulin Rouge“ opens to the public tomorrow, there’s a launch party for the shiny people tonight and this morning there was a media preview which I toddled along to.
If you already know about Toulouse-Lautrec then there’s not much more I need to say about it really. You’ll love this exhibition as an exploration of the strange little man’s life.
If you’ve ever had one of his posters on the wall you’ll appreciate this retrospective of the many aspects of Latrec’s artistic output.
Now if you haven’t heard of the man I’m going to assume you too are a man and the following scenario has occurred in your life. It’s pretty much universal.
At some point in your early 20s you’ve met a young woman in a bar and gone back to her place.
Between 2am and 4am you’ve been staring at a poster on her bedroom wall while, with increasing irritation, the some facts have become clear to you:
- a) You don’t have enough money for a taxi home
b) The woman is not as interesting or attractive as you thought she was in the bar
c) You’re not going to get to have sex with her
While this disappointment unfolded chances are the poster you were looking at was by Toulouse-Latrec.
But don’t hold that against him.
Some of the portraits well worth a look, he had a real way with women’s eyes. Pay attention to the furnished material and you’ll have some pleasant conversation pieces ready to go when you leave the exhibition.
As usual the gallery goes light on the history of the works. The remodelling of Paris in the latter 19th century is alluded to but the Franco-Prussian War which had a bit to do with that is not mentioned.
All in all it’s a pleasant and informative way to spend an hour.