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Picturing a World

Bastien-Lepage deleted

Only one truncated paragraph about Effie and Miss Isobel’s Pont Aven fête at the end of August 1879 survived editing. In the fuller account, the ladies are agog when they receive a drawing of Joan of Arc from Jules Bastien-Lepage for their sale to help raise money for Charlie Post. Recognizing that it will be the talk of the sale, they sell raffle tickets for it.

In his time, Bastien-Lepage was widely admired in the art world, especially by younger artists. He summered in Brittany; Joan of Arc was a major painting, much talked about in 1879; and I loved the idea of including a nod to his influence with a reference it. If you read or reread the novel, please let your imagination expand p. 386. For that matter, tell me in a comment what else you think should be included in the fête!

Marie Bashkirtseff—my “Countess”—was a friend and follower of Bastien-Lepage. For an 1892 consideration of him, her, and their art, click here.
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