TOULOUSE-LAUTREC: His World by Sylvia L. Horwitz


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Horwitz seems to have taken her cue from the bold, high-impact immediacy of her subject's posters. There is little psychological probing or aesthetic analysis here and no retarding attention to detail. We might in fact wish for more of all three, the last in regard to the numerous girls and women who parade in and out of Toulouse-Lautrec's life and his story; despite the vivid, impressionistic sketches of their appearance, style and personalities, the nature, importance and duration of their relationship (model? mistress? affair?) to the artist are rarely clarified. However, we're willing to pay the price, if such it is, for the absence of Moulin Rouge sentimentality. In any case the book is immensely vitalized, from the spoiled little count's country childhood to his last days as a depressed, sometimes deranged alcoholic of 37, by Horwitz' remarkably visual writing and her strongly evocative projection of the artist's bohemian life and his Montmartre milieu.

Pub Date: Nov. 1st, 1973
Publisher: Harper & Row