News

Met refused to remove from the eyes of the "frank" picture of a teenage girl

Continuing scandals involving allegations of sexual harassment have affected the Metropolitan Museum (Met) in New York. An online petition demanding that the “provocative” picture of the French painter Baltus be removed from the exposition has already gained over 8,000 signatures. However, a solid institution came to the defense of art and refused to indulge the guardians of morality.The painting entitled “The Dreaming Teresa” (1938) depicts a teenage girl in a frank pose parading her underwear. Balthus (her real name is Balthazar Klossovsky de Rola) was posed by Teresa Blanchard, who lived next door to her brother Hubert. At that time she was 12 or 13 years old. The girl - alone, with her cat or brother - became the heroine of a series of eleven paintings that the artist wrote in Paris between 1936 and 1939. These images can be called "defiant."Dreaming Teresa Balthus (Balthazar Klossovski de Rola) 1938, 149.9 × 129.5 cm “Considering the current climate associated with sexual violence and accusations that pop up from day to day, the Metropolitan Museum, showing this work to the public, romanticizes voyeurism and the incarnation of children,” says in the petition. The author of the appeal, Mia Merrill, suggested that the controversial canvas could be replaced by a picture of any artist painted in the same period as Dreaming Teresa.Portrait Portrait is a realistic genre depicting a person or a group of people existing in reality. The portrait - in the French reading - portrait, from the old French portraire - "reproduce something line in line." Another facet of the name of the portrait lies in the outdated word "parsuna" - from the Latin. persona - "person; person". Read more "Teresa" (1938) is another picture of Baltus from the Metropolitan Museum collection, for which Teresa Blanchard posed for the answer. Met press press officer Ken Vayn said: "Moments like this provide food for discussion, and visual art - one of the most valuable opportunities for reflection on both the past and the present. ” He called for encouraging “the evolution of the current culture through enlightened discussions and respect for creative expression.” Read also: Dangerous connections: 7 high-profile sex scandals in painting

French-Polish painter Balthus (1908–2001) was often accused of over-frankness of his images of children and adolescents. He himself did not like to communicate his biographical data and preferred to be evaluated on the basis of works ("Balthus is an artist about whom nothing is known. Now let's look at the pictures," he wrote in a telegram sent to the Tate Gallery).
Left: Balthus with his second wife, Japanese artist Setsuko Idata in Switzerland (1998)

It is known that Balthazar Klossovski was born in Paris, his father was an art historian, and his mother - an artist. The future painter grew up among intellectuals such as Andre Gide, Jean Cocteau and Rainer Maria Rilke. The latter was the sponsor and intellectual mentor of Balthus (as well as his mother's lover). The artist was married twice, had four children and died in the Swiss Rosiner a few days before his 93rd birthday anniversary. In a telephone interview with The New York Times, Mia Merrill insisted that she did not call for censorship. “But the blatant objectification and sexualization of the child is the place where I draw the line,” she said.Girl with a catBalthus (Balthasar Klossovsky de Rola) 1937, 87.6 × 77.5 cmWorth noting that “Dreaming Teresa” is not the only Balthus painting in the United States that portrays adolescent girls and boys in a controversial way. At the Art Institute of Chicago, his “Girl with a Cat” was exhibited, for which the same Teresa Blanchard posed in a similar pose. And in the portrait “A Young Girl in a White Shirt” (1955), a teenager demonstrates a naked chest. At the same time, Mia Merrill said that she had not written petitions about the removal of other Balthus paintings, apart from “The Dreaming Teresa”, and did not protest against any of his works. planned. Art: read us in the Telegram and look at InstagramAccording to The New York Times and the official website of the Metropolitan Museum