Edouard Manet was a flâneur in 19th century Paris. At ease among the grande bourgeoisie, a friend of Zola and Baudelaire, his interest turned gradually from history painting to scenes of city life. All his life he longed to be recognized, but works like Luncheon on the Grass and Olympia gave rise only to scandal. Moreover, his provocative snapshots of everyday life struck the viewer as only half-finished, a quality appealing to the artists later called Impressionists.
The film was shot on location at the Musée d'Orsay, the home of French nineteenth-century art; in Spain, to evoke the landscape and culture which so influenced Manet’s early work; and around Paris, where, in the bars, cafes, salons and theaters, the atmosphere of the society in which Manet lived can still be captured. Archive material is used to show the city as it was in Manet’s day.
"Written, directed, and produced by Didier Baussy-Oulianoff, Les Silences de Manet does a nice job of analyzing Manet's work in context of the complex political environment when he was working actively. Baussy-Oulianoff's passion for Manet is obvious, and his style is calm and filled with gentle close-ups. And irony is not lost on Baussy-Oulianoff - it's perversely entertaining to revisit the institutions that initially rejected Manet's work, only to now display them proudly! This insightful look at the career of Edourard Manet is a must for fans of the artist." - Jim M. Howard Jr., DVDfile.com
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