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The Urchin (Le Gamin)

Édouard Manet

European Art

Like his etching Lola de Valence, on view nearby, Manet’s lithograph The Urchin was a reinterpretation of one of his own paintings. Street urchins, or gamins, would have been recognized by the public as referencing figures in the seventeenth-century paintings of Bartolomé Esteban Murillo and Diego Velázquez. The subject attests to the artist’s deep engagement with Spanish art and his tendency to borrow visual tropes from art history and translate them into a contemporary context. It also suggests the significant role that reproductive prints played in transmitting visual culture, as that is how Manet would have known and studied such historical paintings.

Manet worked in etching, lithography, and transfer processes at different periods in his career. He was drawn to printmaking as a means to popularize his art.
MEDIUM Lithograph, printed chine colle
DATES 1868–1874
CREDIT LINE Charles Stewart Smith Memorial Fund
MUSEUM LOCATION This item is not on view
CAPTION Édouard Manet (French, 1832–1883). The Urchin (Le Gamin), 1868–1874. Lithograph, printed chine colle Brooklyn Museum, Charles Stewart Smith Memorial Fund, 40.345 (Photo: , 40.345_PS9.jpg)
EDITION Edition: 100
IMAGE overall, 40.345_PS9.jpg., 2019
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RIGHTS STATEMENT No known copyright restrictions
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Édouard Manet (French, 1832–1883). <em>The Urchin (Le Gamin)</em>, 1868–1874. Lithograph, printed chine colle Brooklyn Museum, Charles Stewart Smith Memorial Fund, 40.345 (Photo: , 40.345_PS9.jpg)