A bar at the Folies Bergere

Impressionism art depicted by A Bar at the Folies Bergere

A bar at the Folies Bergere by Edouard Manet

A bar at the Folies Bergere by Edouard Manet was produced in 1882 and is considered to be one of the famous artworks of Impressionism movement. The work can be viewed now at Courtauld Gallery, London


Medium: Oil Painting 

Subject(s): bar, portrait, woman


A bar at the Folies Bergere is an oil painting produced in 1882 by French painter Edouard Manet.

A Bar at the Folies Bergere was regarded as the last major work by French artist Edouard Manet. Manet painting was exhibited in 1882 at the Paris Salon.

This painting a Bar at the Folies Bergere depicts a scene in Paris from the Folies Bergere nightclub. Emmanuel Chabrier was a composer and neighbor of Manet who was hung over his piano at the bar and it is known that the scene was originally belonged to her. Several critics accused Manet of the central figure standing before a mirror. Many debated about the ignorance of perspective by Manet and alleging several impossibilities from the scene when reviews were published. The use of mirror in many paintings has been crucial for the artist. A photograph taken in 2000 was shown to reconstructed the staged scene; reproduce the scene of the Manet’s painting when taken from a suitable point of view.

The reconstruction of the painting revealed that the actual conversation everyone thought of taking place between the barmaid and gentleman was actually an optical trick. The gentleman showed standing right in front of barmaid in the background of the picture in the mirror was to be standing outside of the artist vision that looks away from the barmaid. The viewer should be standing closer to the bar and to the right in-line of the gentleman’s reflection.

Critics accused Manet of an unusual departure of the viewer central viewpoint to the right side when viewing a bar at the Folies Bergere painting. Manet painted the bar at Folies Bergere because he knew the place very well. In the starting, he only made preparatory sketches there and then painted the final picture in his studio only. Suzon was the barmaid that was employed by Manet to pose behind the bar. The dimensions of the painting were 96 cm × 130 cm or 37.8 in × 51.2 in

The work can be viewed at Courtauld Gallery, London.


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