The Currier is the exclusive New England venue for an extraordinary exhibition of seldom-seen images from The Museum of Modern Art.

 

MANCHESTER, NH – Henri de Toulouse-Lautrec (1864–1901) was one of the most talented – and eccentric – artists of the 19th century. His posters, prints, and advertisements are among the most dynamic and innovative commercial images ever made, and they continue to influence contemporary art, design, and marketing.

 

Lautrec immortalized late 19th-century Paris – especially its café culture and raucous nightlife at establishments like the Moulin Rouge. These iconic images will be on display in The Paris of Toulouse-Lautrec: Prints and Posters from The Museum of Modern Art on view at the Currier Museum of Art from September 30, 2017 through January 7, 2018.

 

The Currier is the exclusive New England venue at which to see these popular works from MoMA’s collection that are rarely displayed, even in New York. Featuring more than 100 objects, The Paris of Toulouse-Lautrec is one of the most comprehensive presentations of Lautrec’s groundbreaking work ever assembled. In the spirit of Lautrec, the museum will be open for free on selected Thursday nights throughout the exhibition. A range of film, music, performances, and cuisine will complement the exhibition.

 

Personality Cult

 

Lautrec’s avant-garde designs appeared on posters plastered throughout Paris, as well as in widely circulated magazines – his work was a version of social media before the digital age. Lautrec prefigured our celebrity-obsessed culture both by cultivating a distinctive public persona and through his depictions of celebrities. Famous singers, dancers, and actors (as well as people famous for being famous) appear in Lautrec’s prints. Born into the aristocracy, Lautrec was attracted to the shadowy underworld of Paris – a realm of entertainers, prostitutes, alcohol, and drugs. He was drawn to personalities who, like himself, had cultivated celebrity through their carefully crafted looks and signature talents: Aristide Bruant, with his arrogant persona and floppy black chapeau; Jane Avril, conspicuous for her red hair and over-the-top hats; and the clown Mademoiselle Cha-U-Kao, known for sporting a top knot and low-cut, ruffle-collared shirt. Lautrec’s images enhanced their fame, and simultaneously brought the artist great acclaim.

 

The City as Muse

 

The neighborhood of Montmartre on the outskirts of Paris was a breeding ground for progressive counter­culture: it provided rich material for Lautrec. He also sketched in parks, cafes, and restaurants throughout the city.

 

These many facets of the artist’s work are addressed in six thematic sections in the exhibition. They explore the artist’s life; scenes of café concerts; portrayals of famous performers; images of women – Lautrec’s frequent subject; prints depicting the varied pleasures of Paris; and illustrations made with creative personalities such as composers, editors, and playwrights.

 

The Paris of Toulouse-Lautrec: Prints and Posters from The Museum of Modern Art was organized by Sarah Suzuki, curator, department of drawings and prints, The Museum of Modern Art, New York.

 

Support for the Currier’s presentation of The Paris of Toulouse-Lautrec has been provided by an anonymous donor. Art New England is media sponsor for the exhibition.

 

Publication

 

The Paris of Toulouse-Lautrec: Prints and Posters is a full-color, 160-page catalogue produced by The Museum of Modern Art. The book is available from the Currier Museum of Art’s Museum Shop ($50 hardcover). Members receive a 10% discount on all purchases in the Museum Shop.

 

Special hours

 

Free Lautrec Late Nights
Oct. 19 and 26, Nov. 9 and 16, and Dec. 14
5 to 9 pm

 

Special late night hours on Thursday evenings give more opportunities to see the exhibition – with free admission! (A $5 special exhibition charge applies for not-yet-members.) Enjoy tours, plays, poetry, and more. A cash bar and food for purchase will be available in the Winter Garden Café.

 

Films presenting some of the most popular cinematic portrayals of Toulouse-Lautrec and his beloved Moulin Rouge will be shown on Oct. 19 (Moulin Rouge, 1952), Nov. 9 (French Cancan, 1960), and Dec. 14 (Moulin Rouge!, 2001) at 6:30 pm.

 

Special event

 

Moulin Rouge at the Currier: La fête de la saison!
Saturday, Nov. 4, 7 to 11 pm

 

Spectacular! A night at the Moulin Rouge! Ladies, don your feathers and corsets. Gents, slip into those fancy duds and top hats. Dress up to celebrate the Montmartre nightlife that Toulouse-Lautrec made famous with an evening of aerial dancers, music, dancing, French fare, and a cash bar. Proceeds from the event support the work of the Currier Museum of Art. Visit Currier.org/Moulin-Rouge to order tickets.

 

Tickets $75 in advance and $100 at the door. Special member pricing $60 until September 23rd.

 

Related events

 

Members-Only Preview
Thursday, Sept. 28, 5:30 to 8:30 pm

 

Be the first to see The Paris of Toulouse-Lautrec! The evening will involve tours, a raffle, music and more. Take advantage of your Membership or join today to be part of the event.

 

Currier After Hours: Parisian Soirée
Thursday, Dec. 7, 6 to 9 pm

 

Join us for a celebration of Parisian night life, including live music, dance performances, and a champagne seminar. A cash bar and full menu are available at the Winter Garden Café. General Admission applies. A $5 special exhibition charge applies for those not-yet-members who are 13 years and older to view The Paris of Toulouse-Lautrec.

 

Many more events and tours for adults and families are scheduled. Visit Currier.org for more information.

 

Also on view

 

Monet: Pathways to Impressionism
Through Nov. 13, 2017

 

The Currier’s beloved The Bridge at Bougival (1869) is recognized as one of only a few of early pictures that foreshadow Claude Monet’s development of impressionism. For the first time, this painting will be on view with three other Monet masterpieces, each representing a milestone in the artist’s career, and providing a concentrated experience of Monet’s artistic development.

 

ABOUT THE CURRIER MUSEUM

 

The Currier Museum of Art is dedicated to connecting art with people in innovative ways. The museum is home to a significant collection of European, American, and Contemporary art, including works by Picasso, Monet, O’Keeffe, Le Witt, and works by New Hampshire artists. This collection inspires exhibitions and programs of many types.

 

The Currier Museum opened to the public in 1929 and completed a new extension in 2008. It is New Hampshire’s museum of art. Located at 150 Ash Street in Manchester, New Hampshire, the museum is open every day except Tuesday.

 

The museum owns the Zimmerman House, a home designed by Frank Lloyd Wright, complete with original furnishings and art. Guided visits can be booked online.

 

The Currier Art Center offers studio classes, art camps, master classes, and intensive workshops for all ages.