Apollo Magazine

Private Lives: Home and Family in the Art of the Nabis, Paris, 1889–1900

From domestic bliss to secret affairs – the Cleveland Museum of Art explores the home lives of the Parisian avant-garde

The Lie (1898), Félix Vallotton.

The Lie (1898), Félix Vallotton. Baltimore Museum of Art. Photo: Mitro Hood

This show focuses on four of the young painters in the group known as the Nabis (from the Hebrew for ‘prophets’), which formed in Paris in the late 1880s. Drawing on the influence of the Symbolists and the post-Impressionists, artists such as Félix Vallotton, Édouard Vuillard, Maurice Denis and Pierre Bonnard sought to convey emotion through symbols and allusions, rather than faithful depiction. This display at the Cleveland Museum of Art (until 19 September) looks at how these painters each depicted domestic life, with scenes of security and intimacy interspersed with hints of intrigue and tensions in the family home. Find out more from the Cleveland Museum of Art’s website.

Preview below | View Apollo’s Art Diary here  

Woman in a Striped Dress (1895), Édouard Vuillard. Courtesy National Gallery of Art, Washington, D.C.

Washing the Baby (1899), Maurice Denis. Photo: © Catalogue raisonné Maurice Denis

Boy Eating Cherries (1895), Pierre Bonnard. Photo © National Gallery of Ireland

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