Sunday, February 26, 2012

Alternative Worlds

Morisot's Alternative Universe is a 20x20 oil by Shirley Fachilla done partially in open studio.

Have you ever wondered why Berthe Morisot was the only woman included in the founding group of Impressionists? Did you (as I did) assume that her marriage to Eugene Manet, Edouard Manet’s brother had a significant role in her acceptance?
If you did, you were mistaken. She was a member of the group long before she married Eugene. In fact, she was probably the member most responsible for organizing its exhibits.
She made the group on her merits. She was a wonderful artist with a true impressionist style. She was a serious painter who considered herself a professional. Of course, it helped that she was Parisian and beautiful. And it certainly didn’t hurt that she and her brother-in-law Edouard liked each other tremendously.
I’m happy I was mistaken. I’ll be less ready to discount talent next time!
My open studio painting includes Morisot’s A Summer’s Day in the background. A Summer’s Day shows the sort of leisure activity approved for women during Morisot’s era. Berthe’s devotion to her art would have been looked upon with less acceptance.  


  1. I had no idea that Berthe inserted herself so strongly into the Impressionist movement as an organizer as well as a talented painter. Good for her! I do love her work!

  2. Hi Shirley- Very informative post by the way. Love your painting including one of hers! You really captured the pensive mood of the sitter. Thanks for stopping by my blog too!!

  3. Wow! Your painting within a painting series is awesome! You combined this woman reading with the painting wonderfully.
    Morisot is amazing. I think Manet put her into a few of his paintings.
    Happy Painting,


Is it too early to send an invitation?

Pieces by (clockwise from left to right) : Susan Harlan, Janet Garner, Shirley Fachilla, Mike Martino and Topper Williams. So many ...