Exploring the Demimonde: Sin and Temptation at the fin-de-siècle

Figge Art Museum 225 West Second Street, Davenport, IA

Curated by Alice M. Phillips, PhD

In late nineteenth-century Paris, as artists and writers became disenchanted with their materialistic society and with naturalism’s attention to the physical world, a variety of creative and psychological movements arose. With them came a newfound interest in Symbolism, which enabled artists to depict the emotions and personal symbols they found within dreams, religion, and ancient mythology. With their innovative design aesthetics and their observations of daily life at spirited venues such as cafés, dance halls, and theatres, they created enigmatic compositions that challenged the French academic style.

This exhibition of European paintings and prints invites you to immerse yourself in the decadent world of fin-de-siècle France and to discover the demimonde of Parisian night life, cabarets, and café culture.

Alice M. Phillips will be presenting a gallery tour of the exhibition on Thursday, September 24, 2015 from 7:00–8:00 p.m.

Works included in the exhibition may be viewed here.

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Divan Japonais (Japanese Sofa)

Henri de Toulouse-Lautrec (French, 1964–1901)

Divan Japonais (Japanese Sofa)

, 1893
Lithographic poster, 32 x 24 1/2 in.
Gift of Gaston de Havernon, 1971.217