Friday, December 9, 2016

Girl Minstrel (1881)

Gustave Jean Jacquet: Girl Minstrel

This dewy, wide-eyed girl steps out of the hazy background as if emerging from a dream. A disciple of William Bouguereau, Gustave Jean Jacquet perfected the tight, enameled brush technique seen here. The painting captures the predicament of a young waif who must fend for herself in a harsh world. Dressed in rags and rough homespun, she holds a hurdy-gurdy, a musical instrument long associated with gypsies and the lower classes. Although seemingly innocent, Jacquet’s sentimental subject is a pretext for presenting a suggestive image of a vulnerable young girl in need of rescue. [Chrysler Museum]

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