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European Art

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Artwork Details

Artist/Maker

Albert-Ernest Carrier-Belleuse
French, 1824–1887

Date

ca. 1870

Medium

Terracotta

Accession #

2012.67

Dimensions

27 1/4 inches

Location

On View - Stent Family Wing, Level 2, Gallery 207

Description

This imagined portrait of a young, nubile Algerian woman is a prime example of colonial attitudes in the later 1800s. Responding to common male erotic fantasies about harem life, Carrier-Belleuse represented the figure dressed in revealing, bust-hugging garments and with a heavy-lidded come-hither smile, turning her into an object of desire.
The sculptural medium of cast terracotta is perfectly suited to Carrier-Belleuse’s romantic realism; even the finest material details are crisply rendered, from embroidery- encrusted fabric and coin-hung beads to the woman’s even teeth and curling tresses.

Credit

Gift of Irene and Howard Stein