The exhibition will go on display from the 25 November 2023 – 10 March 2024.

Edgar Degas, Dancers on a Bench, c. 1898. Lent by Glasgow Life (Glasgow Museums) on behalf of Glasgow City Council. Bequeathed by William McInnes, 1944. Photo: © CSG CIC Glasgow Museums Collection.

From this November, the Royal Academy of Arts will present an exhibition that will explore how Impressionist and Post-Impressionist artists in late 19th -century France radically transformed the status of works on paper.

During this period drawings, pastels, watercolours, temperas and gouaches were considered to as more than just preparatory techniques, and became autonomous works of art, claiming a shared aesthetic with painting.

This new exhibition will feature more than 80 works on paper, by artists including Mary Cassatt, Paul Cézanne, Edgar Degas, Paul Gauguin, Eva Gonzalès, Claude Monet, Berthe Morisot, Odilon Redon, PierreAuguste Renoir, Georges Seurat, Henri de Toulouse-Lautrec and Vincent van Gogh.

It is set to open with works from the early years of Impressionism (the 1860s and 1870s), including Degas’ enigmatic Woman at a Window, 1870-71 (The Courtauld, London (Samuel
Courtauld Trust)) and a delicate study in pastel by Gonzalès, entitled The Bride, 1879 (Private collection). The exhibition will then move onto the examination of the 1880s, when the Impressionists held their last group exhibition in Paris. Works in this section will include van Gogh’s The Fortifications of Paris with Houses, 1887 (The Whitworth, The University of Manchester). Impressionists on Paper: Degas to Toulouse-Lautrec will then conclude with works from the 1890s and 1900s, which saw an ever-growing appreciation of works on paper and a proliferation of exhibitions of the medium. It was also a golden age of pastel, exemplified in Degas’ Dancers on a Bench, c.1898 (Glasgow Life Museums, Glasgow), one of his last renderings of a ballet scene. The final section will also include examples of Cézanne’s meditative watercolours, Toulouse-Lautrec’s indelible images of the urban underworld of Montmartre and Redon’s glowing poetic reveries.

Overall, this exhibition will offer an insight into the innovations made by Impressionist and Post-Impressionist artists in their drawings, which are often still relatively unknown
but are no less radical than their painting.

To find out more and to book tickets visit: https://www.royalacademy.org.uk/exhibition/impressionists-on-paper

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