A Portrait of Carolus-Duran
Montgeron, near Paris, 1876
Oil on canvas
Manet painted this study of the portraitist Emile-Auguste Carolus-Duran (1838 – 1917) when staying at a patron’s country estate near Paris.
The two artists were old friends and they agreed to paint each other. Carolus-Duran is shown in riding boots in a nonchalant pose, suggesting that he has just arrived from his nearby home. Manet wrote that there was ‘too much entertainment here to work seriously’ and the portrait is unfinished, especially its rapidly improvised landscape. The boldly painted figure is resolved enough, however, to understand the impact Manet made as the provocative painter of modern-life subjects.
Purchased 1937 (No.37.12)