Video: A Portrait Cut in Half, or What Separated Chopin and Georges Sand
2023 Author: Richard Flannagan | [email protected]. Last modified: 2023-07-29 10:45
Painter Eugene Delacroix maintained friendly relations with the writer Georges Sand (Aurora Dupin) and sincerely admired the composer Frederic Chopin … He was a frequent visitor to their home in Nohant and one day decided to paint their twin portrait. In the painting, Georges Sand enthusiastically listened to Chopin playing the piano. But after the death of Delacroix, the portrait was cut in half, and now these halves are kept in different museums around the world. What contributed to this strange act, and why were the writer and composer separated?
Delacroix met Georges Sand in 1833. He greatly appreciated the communication with the writer, who at that time was rightfully considered one of the most progressive and out-of-the-box women of the 19th century. She was his favorite companion, in dialogues with whom he was not afraid to express the most daring thoughts. In one of the letters addressed to Georges Sand, Delacroix wrote: "I observe a huge difference between husbands and other men: the latter enjoy having women whom the former are reluctant to have, despite the fact that they have."
Georges Sand and Chopin met in 1836, and the first meeting made an unpleasant impression on the composer: “I met a great celebrity - Madame Dudevant, known as Georges Sand, but her face is unsympathetic, and I did not like her at all. There is even something repulsive in it,”Chopin wrote to his relatives in Warsaw. He was intimidated by her masculine outfits, cigars and casual looks.
The writer showed the determination and perseverance usually characteristic of men. As a result, Chopin gave up and moved to her estate in Nohant. Delacroix often visited there, who admired Chopin's talent and called him divine and genius in his letters. In the same summer of 1838, a pair portrait was created. The artist portrayed Chopin as defenseless, sad, spiritualized, completely immersed in the element of music and creativity.
The years spent with George Sand were the most inspirational and fruitful for Chopin: it was at that time that he created all of his most famous masterpieces. However, even before the moment when the paired portrait was cut into two parts, there were circumstances that inexorably dividing them. And first of all - the difference in temperaments and outlook: morbid, contemplative, capricious and timid Chopin could not withstand the pressure of the energetic, decisive, irascible Georges Sand. In her hearts, she often complained that her lover was behaving like an old sick woman. He really was sick with tuberculosis, and the writer took care of him for 9 years. But in 1847 they parted. Two years later, Chopin passed away, and his last words were the phrase: "She promised me that I would die in her arms."
After Delacroix's death, the owners of the pair portrait, hoping to get more money from the sale of two paintings, decided to cut it in two. And they succeeded in the plan. However, there is a version that this was done at the request of George Sand herself after parting with Chopin. But the real reason was much more prosaic - the greed of the owners, apparently, was the only reason for blasphemy. As a result, the portrait of George Sand ended up in the Copenhagen Museum, and the portrait of Chopin is kept in the Louvre.
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