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Becoming a Woman in the Age of Enlightenment: French Art from The Horvitz Collection

This exhibition examines the many paths and stages of women’s lives through the art of 18th-century France. Works by Fragonard, Boucher, Watteau, Greuze, and others, all drawn from the finest private collection of French art in the United States, show a variety of women, from court ladies to washerwomen, in their many societal roles. From the ancien régime to the Revolution and beyond, women’s position and power were transformed. Organized thematically, the exhibition’s 100-plus paintings, drawings, and sculptures explore cultural and literary archetypes that affected women’s self-image, their development from childhood to old age, their romances, and their familial responsibilities. In addition to a new understanding of French 18th-century art, Becoming a Woman provides a new view of the feminine world at the dawn of modernity.