Henri de Toulouse-Lautrec (1864-1901)
At the Moulin Rouge
Source: Courtauld Gallery / theartwolf.com
Jane Avril (1868- 1943), nicknamed La Mélinite, was one of the most famous dancers of the Moulin Rouge in the 1890s. She became a close friend of the painter and printmaker Henri de Toulouse-Lautrec (1864-1901), and soon became an important figure in Lautrec’s world of dancers, singers, musicians and prostitutes.
The most important painting at the exhibition is "At the Moulin Rouge", an exceptional loan from the Art Institute of Chicago, in which Jane Avril is instantly recognizable by her red hair. Another important work is "Jane Avril in the Entrance to the Moulin Rouge", from the collection of the Courtauld Gallery. As the press note of the exhibition accurately notes, Jane Avril looks "far older than her twenty-two years", as it also happens in "Jane Avril Leaving the Moulin Rouge" (on loan from the Wadsworth Atheneum).
The exhibition also features an important group of lithographs, including "Divan Japonais" and "Mademoiselle Eglantine’s Troupe", both coming from the Victoria & Albert Museum.
'Toulouse-Lautrec and Jane Avril: Beyond the Moulin Rouge' is accompanied by a fully illustrated catalogue by Nancy Ireson and Anna Gruetzner-Robins.