December 16, 2013

Manet’s Black Chokers

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Today I’m thinking of the black necklaces Manet often painted women wearing.

Maybe many women did wear chokers. But I think Manet painted black ribbon necklaces in so many of his portraits because the strip of black against skin added something essential to his compositions—and just because he liked the way it looked. He made black chokers or necklaces look beautiful on everyone, from Victorine Meurent and Berthe Morisot, to Suzanne Leenhoff, who became his wife in 1863.

It’s hard to argue with the look. Here’s Brigitte Bardot in a black choker:

Brigitte Bardot

But I like the look here, too:


Join the conversation! 2 Comments

  1. Indeed fascinating detail! It is so fascinating just because it is so simple, and a discreet black line caressing a woman’s neck might have a deeply alluring connotation.


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About Maureen Gibbon

Writer. Author of the novels Swimming Sweet Arrow, Thief, Paris Red.

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