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Exhibition Catalogue: Suzanne Valadon: Model, Painter, Rebel


This lavish catalogue will accompany the first major American exhibition of the French model and painter Suzanne Valadon (1865–1938) at the Barnes Foundation, opening September 26th, 2021.

Despite the popularity and success Valadon enjoyed in her lifetime, her work has been neglected since her death. Suzanne Valadon: Model, Painter, Rebel reconsiders the life and legacy of the revolutionary artist.

Valadon was the first self-taught woman artist to exhibit at the salon of the Société Nationale des Beaux-Arts. Later, when she turned to painting, she showed regularly at the Salon des Indépendants and the Salon d’Automne. She made a living from her art at a time when women faced countless obstacles to professional success. Despite these accomplishments, her work has received scant attention outside of France. The Barnes Foundation is the first US institution to dedicate an exhibition to Valadon, introducing American audiences to her work and story.

This catalogue focuses on the unique role Valadon played within the Parisian art world. Seen in the twenty-first century, Valadon’s confrontational and witty works still challenge viewers with their unapologetic presentations of women’s bodies, female desire, and the conflicts of marriage and motherhood. Always faithful to figurative representation, she refused to follow artistic trends, developing a distinctive pictorial language characterized by decisive lines and bold coloration.

Edited by Nancy Ireson.

Hardcover, 160 pages.

Note: a minor typesetting issue on pages 21–40 of this book occurred during the printing process. We are aware of the matter and apologize for any inconvenience it may cause.