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CONFRONTING DUALITIES OF THE FLESH: "DE VROUW" 1924-25, A GOUACHE SERIES BY FRITS VAN DEN BERGHE

by VAN PAMEL, JOKE

Abstract (Summary)
Belgian artist Frits Van den Berghe (1883-1939) is well-known for being one of the three pioneers of Flemish expressionism, a group that was prolific in the 1920s. In the period from 1924 to 1925, he created a striking series of gouaches titled “De vrouw” (The Woman). This unusual and whimsical series of twenty works features compromising dreamlike interactions between nude women and clothed men. It cannot be categorized in terms of either Expressionism or Surrealism alone. To date there is no in-depth reading of this series. My study will address this lacuna in scholarship as I shall offer an examination of the psycho-social values of the series. It will be within this context that I interpret the artist’s ability to encapsulate dualities on several fronts: not only between his private and public spheres, but also regarding the intricacies surrounding gender and sexual identity in Belgium during the 1920s.
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School:University of Cincinnati

School Location:USA - Ohio

Source Type:Master's Thesis

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Date of Publication:01/01/2006

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