The exhibition highlights the importance of drawing in the development of artistic traditions in eighteenth and nineteenth-century France. It features 30 works on paper from the collection of Paul Hayes Tucker ’72 and the museum’s permanent collection.
Together, the works demonstrate how drawings are often an essential part of the artistic process. Artists have used drawing to refine their skills, organize compositions, and to generate ideas for paintings and sculptures. This exhibition examines artist’s responses to the rigorous way figure drawing was taught at the Royal Academy of Painting and Sculpture in France, how artists experimented with drawing in their private studios, and also how everyday life outside the studio was depicted. This exhibition also presents comparisons that may expand our understanding of drawing, such as the relationship between drawing and printed media, the intimate and personal nature of the drawn portrait, and the repetition of subject matter. Included in the exhibition are a variety of artists, such as Eugène Delacroix (French, 1798-1863), Jean-Léon Gérôme (French, 1824-1904), Hubert Robert (French, 1733-1808), Edgar Degas (French, 1834-1917), Georges Seurat (French, 1859-1891), Thomas Couture (French, 1815-1879), and Alexandre Cabanel (French, 1823-1889).