Renowned as a giant of French Romantic painting, Eugène Delacroix (1798–1863) was equally a dedicated and innovative draftsman. Through a selection of more than one hundred works on paper — ranging from finished watercolors to sketchbooks, from copies after old master prints to preparatory drawings for important projects — this exhibition will explore the central role of drawing in Delacroix’s practice.
The exhibition will celebrate a major gift to The Met from Karen B. Cohen, an Honorary Trustee and longtime supporter of the Museum, of her renowned collection of drawings by Delacroix. Assembled with an eye to the artist’s process, the collection highlights how drawing shaped Delacroix’s formation throughout his career; his application of the medium in the preparation of prints, paintings, and public decorative programs; and his investment in the expressive potential of his materials. As the first exhibition devoted to Delacroix’s draftsmanship in North America in more than fifty years, it will introduce a new generation to the artist’s works on paper.