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Picturing a World

Fencing Lesson

After his walk in the Tuileries Garden, Edward takes his first lesson at Pierre Artaud’s fencing studio. Edward’s ambivalent taste for the sport gave me a way to dramatize his inner conflicts about chivalry and aggression. Fencing was an important sport throughout the 19th C in France and Germany, partly because real duels (though illegal) were still fought in both countries. Fencing manuals from the period and articles in popular periodicals about both the sport and duels gave me confidence in inventing M. Artaud’s establishment.

A First Lesson is a screen shot from Theodore Child, “Duelling in Paris” in Harper’s New Monthly Magazine, vol. 74, no. 442 (March 1887), p 533.
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