Manet inspires me for many reasons, but I’ll focus on just one in this love letter. Almost as soon as Manet started to paint, people criticized his choice of subjects, use of color, composition, or style of painting. One of his first critics was his teacher, Thomas Couture, who objected to Manet’s desire to portray […]

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 […]

Do you see the resemblance that I see?  Or am I just in love? How about this: Each age has its own muse—or maybe she keeps coming back.  What do you think? All I know for certain is that I love these two women, and am moved by their images and their lives.

I look down and fiddle with the metal clip and the band.  I keep my head lowered and when I get tired of pushing at my stocking, I let my fingers relax and just keep them there, the tips tucked under the band above my knee.  It is not like the nude poses for Moulin.  […]

Victorine Meurent was born on February 18, 1844, not far from Canal Saint-Martin. She started posing for Manet when she was a teenager, and was his “modèle de predilection” for thirteen years. She became an artist and exhibited at 1876 Salon of the Académie des Beaux-Arts. She’s the first-person narrator and star of my novel, […]