miércoles, 5 de julio de 2017

ANACAPRI || Christa Zaat

Christa Zaat

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Gerda Wegener (Danish illustrator and painter) 1886 - 1940
aka Gerda Gottlieb Wegener Porta, Frederikke Gerda Maria Wegener
Sur la Route d'Anacapri (On the Road to Anacapri), 1922
oil on canvas
96 x 85 cm. (37.8 x 33.46 in.)
Centre Pompidou in Paris, France

Lili Elbe was trans woman. She was born a male in Denmark in 1882 and named Einar Wegener. He married Gerda Wegener: they were both painters. He changed sex and was called Lili Elbe. Elbe had several surgical operations to reconfigure her genital organs, and died in the course of her fifth operation.

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Article from Vogue, 25 November 2015, by Ptricia Garcia: The Real Story Behind the Paintings in The Danish Girl

In the early 1900s, Danish artist Gerda Wegener came up with a creative solution after her model was running late: She had her husband, landscape painter Einar Wegener, pose for her in stockings and heels instead. That brief experience stirred something inside of Einar, who, from then on, would start dressing up as a woman named Lili Elbe. In 1930, Lili became one of the first people to embark on sexual reassignment surgery.

The story of Lili and Gerda unfolds in Tom Hooper’s new biopic, The Danish Girl, which stars Eddie Redmayne and Alicia Vikander. The film is based on David Ebershoff’s novel of the same name, which drew inspiration from Lili’s original journals that she kept while she was transitioning from a man to a woman. Hooper and production designer Eve Stewart decided early on that the best way to tell the story of these two avant-garde artists was through their own work, particularly Gerda’s portraits of Lili. “The paintings were the way in,” Stewart said by phone. “Because they not only illustrated Lili’s journey, but they also illustrated their lives in a way.”

While Einar’s bare landscapes were a hit in Copenhagen, Denmark, Gerda’s feminine portraits were never quite accepted by the Danish art community. After Einar started transitioning into Lili, she became Gerda’s muse. Her Art Nouveau portraits of Lili became her breakthrough and earned her fame and recognition as an artist in Paris. “It was alluring to people to see someone as spectacularly beautiful as Lili and as different,” Stewart explained of the paintings’ success.

The film’s paintings weren’t exact replicas of Gerda’s work, however. “We had to adapt them slightly because they didn’t look like Eddie,” Stewart said. The original portrait of ballerina Ulla Poulsen, the one that changed Lili’s life forever, was also altered to resemble actress Amber Heard’s face. In addition to the release of The Danish Girl, this month, Denmark’s Arken Museum of Modern Art will be displaying the largest exhibition of Gerda’s work so far, a development that delighted Stewart. “I think she would have been so thrilled that finally she was taken seriously by the Danish.”

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