Dancer in a Hoop Skirt

Constantin Guysc. 1860/70

Kunsthalle Bremen

Kunsthalle Bremen
Bremen, Germany

The French poet and author Charles Baudelaire dedicated what is most likely his most famous prose text, Le Peintre de la vie moderne (The Painter of Modern Life), to Constantin Guys in 1863. In this work, Baudelaire developed his theory of modernité, raising Guys to the paradigm of the modern artist, who perceived big-city life as a flaneur and then set about capturing its character artistically, at once fleeting and timeless, by means of deindividualized description. To Guys’s aesthetics of everyday life belonged portraits of minor cocottes of Parisian bohemian life, such as the one depicted in the Bremen watercolor Dancer in a Hoop Skirt. Charming and cheeky, she shows us her tulle dress that Guys rendered in a light, transparent brush technique. In Germany, Guys was discovered by the art historian and writer Julius Meier-Graefe. It is most likely on account of his kind advice that the writer and publisher Alfred Walter Heymel, who bequeathed the watercolor to the Kunstverein in Bremen, had become one of the first German collectors of Guys.


  • Title: Dancer in a Hoop Skirt
  • Creator: Constantin Guys
  • Date Created: c. 1860/70
  • Physical Dimensions: 261.0 x 177.0 mm
  • Type: drawing
  • Rights: Kunsthalle Bremen - Der Kunstverein in Bremen. Kupferstichkabinett
  • Medium: Watercolor and pen in black and brown ink over lead

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