"Up and Down the Garden Path: Secrets of La Promenade Revealed," by Colin B. Bailey, The Frick Collection, and Charlotte Hale, The Metropolitan Museum of Art, Saturday, May 5, 2012. The Frick's Promenade is the most important Impressionist painting acquired by Henry Clay Frick. In researching this well-known work for the exhibition Renoir, Impressionism, and Full-Length Painting, many technical and documentary discoveries were made.
Alex Gordon Lecture in the History of Art: "Renoir and the Democracy of Fashion," by Aileen Ribeiro, Courtauld Institute of Art, London, March 28, 2012. The period after the fall of the Second Empire in France saw huge developments in the fashion industry, not just in haute couture, but also in the greater availability of ready-to-wear clothes and in the emergence of Paris's shopping culture. More people than ever before expressed an interest in fashion trends, a phenomenon that was reflected in contemporary art and literature.
There is a long tradition in Western European art of the full-length format. The Frick's Colin B. Bailey examines the sort of art Renoir was looking back to when, during the 1870s and early '80s, as a founding Impressionist, he chose this format to paint some of his most joyful and ambitious pictures of everyday life in the metropolis.
"Renoir and the Woman of Paris," by Anne Distel, independent scholar, March 7, 2012. In characterizing Renoir's art, Cézanne once said that his old friend had "painted the woman of Paris." Cézanne's insight provides the point of departure for this lecture, which takes a closer look at Renoir's female figures.
"Fashioning the Mistress," by Gloria Groom, The Art Institute of Chicago, February 22, 2012. Between 1866 and 1872 Renoir featured his mistress Lise Tréhot in more than thirty paintings, ranging from small and intimate genre scenes to the full-length canvases that he exhibited. Tréhot, wearing the most up-to-the-minute fashions, served as Renoir's calling card by advertising the artist as a painter of modern life, and especially of the fashionable Parisienne.