la grande odalisque criticism

La grande odalisque criticism
• Portrait of Monsieur Bertin (1832) by J.A.D. Ingres.
Explanation of Other French Paintings

La grande odalisque criticism
Ingres portrays a concubine in languid pose as seen from behind with distorted proportions. The small head, elongated limbs, and cool color scheme all reveal influences from Mannerists such as Parmigianino, [3] whose Madonna with the Long Neck was also famous for anatomical distortion.
This eclectic mix of styles, combining classical form with Romantic themes, prompted harsh criticism when it was first shown in 1814. Critics viewed Ingres as a rebel against the contemporary style of form and content. When the painting was first shown in the Salon of 1819, one critic remarked that the work had “neither bones nor muscle, neither blood, nor life, nor relief, indeed nothing that constitutes imitation”. [4] This echoed the general view that Ingres had disregarded anatomical realism. [5] Ingres instead favored long lines to convey curvature and sensuality, as well as abundant, even light to tone down the volume. [5] Ingres continued to be criticized for his work until the mid-1820s. [3]

Copy of Titian’s Venus of Urbino, 1822 (Walters Art Gallery, Baltimore)
Silke Förschler traces changes in the interpretation of Grande Odalisque during the nineteenth century:

La grande odalisque criticism
La Grande Odalisque,
French painting

La grande odalisque criticism
[3] Lewis, Gendered Orientalism, 1-2.
[1] Demo, “The Guerrilla Girls”, 149.


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