Past Exhibitions

She sews, She runs, the Grisette...

Du 14/10/2011 au 15/01/2012

Horaires : 10AM-6PM

Plein tarif / Tarif réduit : -

The tour shows less the historical reality and more the mobility of this figure, and the numerous attempts by artists as well as journalists to take possession of it. She takes her name from the grey tissue, the “grisette”, but parisian engravers as wells as painters of the province show her dressed in vibrant colors. A young textile worker, “she worked at home, lodged in a boutique et went to the city,” according to some. For others -- from Balzac, to Gavarni, to Baudelaire -- the Grisette appeared like a central point in a constellation who went from a shepherdess to a courtesan, and joined the bohemian milieu.

Could we define her by the cashmere shawl of which she dreamed or by her small hat? We could easily make her live in an attic, recreated by an ingenious device at the Maison de Balzac. But the exposition also evokes her pleasures, because the grisette also enjoyed trips to the country, donkey rides, common theatre spectacles, balls, and popular dances. We cross her furtively on the streets and passages, and the young trainee, who wears dresses and hats, returns transformed under Balzac’s pen or in Constantin Guys’s designs. The transience of the silhouettes and the fantasmagorical profiles of the magic lantern, the distant ancestor of the projector, happily concludes the portrait of this infallible grisette.

Commissariat de l’exposition :

Nathalie Preiss, Claire Scamaroni