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Beatrice (Béatrice)

This work was one of Redon’s first color prints. His experience in oil and pastel established him as a leading colorist, giving him the confidence to create a print without any lines. Not only does this technique create a luminous, poetic image, but it also perfectly reflected its subject. Beatrice Portinari (1266–1290) was the real woman who inspired Dante’s Vita Nuovo. She also appears as his guide in the Divine Comedy, Paradise, and Purgatory. For the Symbolists, she embodied pure beatific/virginal love and heavenly vision.

Odilon Redon
French, 1840–1916
Beatrice (Béatrice), from The Album of Original Prints from the Vollard Gallery (L'Album d'estampes originales de la Galerie Vollard) (no. 2)
1897
Color lithograph on chine collé paper
Image: 13 ¼ x 11 11/16 in. (33.7 x 29.7 cm); sheet: 19 9/16 x 15 ½ in. (49.7 x 39.4 cm)
Sidney and Lois Eskenazi Museum of Art, 73.27.1