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Off the record: een vroeg vrouwelijk naakt van Franse makelij op een Nederlandse tentoonstelling: Marie-Louise Lefèvre-Deumiers Diana in Den Haag in 1866

Marjan Sterckx (UGent)
(2015) DE NEGENTIENDE EEUW. 3(4). p.209-229
Author
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Abstract
This article deals with the case of an early female (semi)nude by a French sculptress, shown exceptionally early at a Dutch exhibition: the Living Masters in The Hague in 1866, even if it was not mentioned in the catalogue. The artist, Marie-Louise Lefèvre-Deumier, then temporarily lived in The Hague but was from Paris, where it was then more customary to exhibit nudes, except for women. The discussed case concerns such an exception, particularly for the Netherlands, where it was not yet evident in 1866 to exhibit nudity, let alone by a woman. Yet it seems that little or no fuss was made when Lefèvre-Deumier showed her Diana in The Hague. In this text, explanations are sought for both its early presentation, and the lack of controversy it aroused. That fact that it only concerned a small statuette, that conformed to the classical sculpture tradition, that it was not mentioned in the catalogue, and that the sculptress had a respectable social and artistic reputation, might all have played a role. Moreover, judging from two (other) known semi-nude marble statues from the same sculptor (Glycera and Morning Star), it is argued that the statuette shown in The Hague, representing the chaste Diana, must have held an acceptable balance between prudery and sensuality. This in contrast to Edouard Manet’s contemporary Olympia, thus showing the double moral as concerned to sexuality in the arts of the 1860s, in Paris as well as in the Netherlands.
Keywords
prudery, statue, Living Masters, the nude, sculpture, woman sculptor, Belgium, the Netherlands, Glycera, Paris, France, Diana, Brussels, The Hague, 19th century, Salon, Marie-Louise Lefèvre-Deumier, J. Alberdinck-Thijm, exhibition, sexuality, Olympia, Charles Hermans, Manet, Ary Scheffer, Gustave Courbet, painting, gender

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Citation

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MLA
Sterckx, Marjan. “Off the Record: Een Vroeg Vrouwelijk Naakt Van Franse Makelij Op Een Nederlandse Tentoonstelling: Marie-Louise Lefèvre-Deumiers Diana in Den Haag in 1866.” DE NEGENTIENDE EEUW 3.4 (2015): 209–229. Print.
APA
Sterckx, M. (2015). Off the record: een vroeg vrouwelijk naakt van Franse makelij op een Nederlandse tentoonstelling: Marie-Louise Lefèvre-Deumiers Diana in Den Haag in 1866. DE NEGENTIENDE EEUW, 3(4), 209–229.
Chicago author-date
Sterckx, Marjan. 2015. “Off the Record: Een Vroeg Vrouwelijk Naakt Van Franse Makelij Op Een Nederlandse Tentoonstelling: Marie-Louise Lefèvre-Deumiers Diana in Den Haag in 1866.” De Negentiende Eeuw 3 (4): 209–229.
Chicago author-date (all authors)
Sterckx, Marjan. 2015. “Off the Record: Een Vroeg Vrouwelijk Naakt Van Franse Makelij Op Een Nederlandse Tentoonstelling: Marie-Louise Lefèvre-Deumiers Diana in Den Haag in 1866.” De Negentiende Eeuw 3 (4): 209–229.
Vancouver
1.
Sterckx M. Off the record: een vroeg vrouwelijk naakt van Franse makelij op een Nederlandse tentoonstelling: Marie-Louise Lefèvre-Deumiers Diana in Den Haag in 1866. DE NEGENTIENDE EEUW. Hilversum: Uitgeverij Verloren; 2015;3(4):209–29.
IEEE
[1]
M. Sterckx, “Off the record: een vroeg vrouwelijk naakt van Franse makelij op een Nederlandse tentoonstelling: Marie-Louise Lefèvre-Deumiers Diana in Den Haag in 1866,” DE NEGENTIENDE EEUW, vol. 3, no. 4, pp. 209–229, 2015.
@article{6871320,
  abstract     = {This article deals with the case of an early female (semi)nude by a French sculptress, shown exceptionally early at a Dutch exhibition: the Living Masters in The Hague in 1866, even if it was not mentioned in the catalogue. The artist, Marie-Louise Lefèvre-Deumier, then temporarily lived in The Hague but was from Paris, where it was then more customary to exhibit nudes, except for women. The discussed case concerns such an exception, particularly for the Netherlands, where it was not yet evident in 1866 to exhibit nudity, let alone by a woman. Yet it seems that little or no fuss was made when Lefèvre-Deumier showed her Diana in The Hague. In this text, explanations are sought for both its early presentation, and the lack of controversy it aroused. That fact that it only concerned a small statuette, that conformed to the classical sculpture tradition, that it was not mentioned in the catalogue, and that the sculptress had a respectable social and artistic reputation, might all have played a role. Moreover, judging from two (other) known semi-nude marble statues from the same sculptor (Glycera and Morning Star), it is argued that the statuette shown in The Hague, representing the chaste Diana, must have held an acceptable balance between prudery and sensuality. This in contrast to Edouard Manet’s contemporary Olympia, thus showing the double moral as concerned to sexuality in the arts of the 1860s, in Paris as well as in the Netherlands.},
  author       = {Sterckx, Marjan},
  issn         = {1381-8546},
  journal      = {DE NEGENTIENDE EEUW},
  keywords     = {prudery,statue,Living Masters,the nude,sculpture,woman sculptor,Belgium,the Netherlands,Glycera,Paris,France,Diana,Brussels,The Hague,19th century,Salon,Marie-Louise Lefèvre-Deumier,J. Alberdinck-Thijm,exhibition,sexuality,Olympia,Charles Hermans,Manet,Ary Scheffer,Gustave Courbet,painting,gender},
  language     = {dut},
  number       = {4},
  pages        = {209--229},
  publisher    = {Uitgeverij Verloren},
  title        = {Off the record: een vroeg vrouwelijk naakt van Franse makelij op een Nederlandse tentoonstelling: Marie-Louise Lefèvre-Deumiers Diana in Den Haag in 1866},
  volume       = {3},
  year         = {2015},
}