Thursday, October 27, 2011

Lady In Red

by Drew Martin

This past Sunday my parents and I stopped for lunch in Washington, D.C. at a cafeteria in the National Gallery of Art. It was a welcomed break during our long drive from Richmond, Virginia to our respective towns in northern New Jersey.

My father had recently finished reading David McCullough's The Greater Journey: Americans in Paris ("about young Americans — aspiring artists, doctors and writers — who went to study and work in Paris between 1830 and 1900, then returned home to make their marks") so we viewed Gallery of the Louvre painted by the American Inventor Samuel F. B. Morse (morse code) during his stay in Paris.

We whisked through a few other galleries in the museum. My longest pause was by Antonio Canova's Reclining Naiad (1824) but the work that really caught my eye just before we exited was Study of Lilia (1887) by Carolus-Duran (Charles Auguste Émile Durand). It is so red, so mysterious. Even after 125 years it is so fresh. Lilia's youth and beauty radiates from her pale neck. It love it!