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FrontRunners: John Singer Sargent

The roundly talented Italian-born American painter John Singer Sargent (1856–1925) is perhaps best known for Madame X, a portrait of Madame Gautreau in which the artist emphasized the Parisian beauty’s alabaster skin and black décolleté dress. The painting made waves at Paris’ Salon of 1884, where critics considered it strange and sexually charged.

This year Sargent’s art is making waves of a different nature, as the Corcoran Gallery of Art in Washington, D.C., sends Sargent and the Sea (www.corcoran.org) to the Museum of Fine Arts, Houston (February 14 to May 23), and to London’s Royal Academy of Arts (July 10 to September 26). The exhibition, which commenced in September, unites more than 80 of Sargent’s lesser-known paintings, watercolors, and drawings—all of which were influenced by his coastal and transatlantic travels as a young man.

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Courtesy of Shakespeare and Company - Paul Foster Books - the NY Antiquarian Book Fair
Photo courtesy of Klein Sun Gallery, New York; Li Hongbo