The Absinthe Drinker by Edgar Degas in 1876 (Impressionism)

It was exhibited at the 3rd Impressionist Exhibition in 1877 and faced​ ​a very cold reception in France. But the English hated it😰They viewed​ ​it as a warning lesson​ ​against absinthe and the French lack of moral​ ​in general.
The painting evokes an aspect of the dark side of Parisian life. The​ ​pathetic solitude emanating from the scene is accentuated by the​ ​right-of-center location of the human figures. (One unusual aspect of​ ​the painting is the fact that the tables in the scene have no legs and​ ​they just hover in the air without any visible means of support. Here​ ​is the original application of Degas in using styling from Japanese​ ​prints and art resulting in a very flat composition🇯🇵) The body language and expression of the couple​ ​show the effects of the poisonous green alcohol, often referred​ ​to as the” green fairy”✨
Absinthe had been known since biblical times. ​The greek​ name​ ​”​absinthion​” mean​s​ ​”​undrinkable​”​😳. The modern absinthe story began​ ​in the 1830s when French troops​ ​fighting in Algeria used it as an​ ​anti-malarial. They​ ​brought their newfound taste home with them, and​ ​it soon became popular.
In the second half of the nineteenth century absinthe became commonly​ ​known as “the queen of poisons” and in France was considered​ ​responsible for a range of social changes – from an increase in​ ​numbers incarcerated in asylums, to trade union unrest and even​ ​women’s emancipation(!!!)
It also became a symbol and a fuel for creative​ ​individuals and artists​ ​including Toulouse-Lautrec, Picasso, Gauguin, van Gogh…​ ​either drank it or made it​ ​the subject of their work. At the time​ ​it was considered to stimulate creativity and act as an aphrodisiac.​..​
​Later ​in 1914, the production and selling of absinthe was finally outlawed​ ​by the French government⛔️. The models for these unfortunate people were two close friends of​ ​Degas: Ellen Andrée and the painter Marcelin Desboutin… after the painting was exhibited, it cast a slur on their reputations​ ​and Degas had to state publicly that they were not alcoholics😅.
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