Term Paper 1st Draft Georges Seurat’s painting Models (Poseuses) is a rather large oil on canvas painting that can be found at the Barnes Foundation. The painting stands at 73 ¾ by 98 ¾ inches. It is thought that the painting was done somewhere between 1886-1888. Depicted in the painting is 3 models getting dressed, one is standing in the center looking at the viewer, the other to the right is sitting down putting on socks, and the other to the left has her back to the viewer. Strewn around the room are different articles of clothing and shoes, while in the background is a picture of another one of Seurat’s paintings, “A Sunday Afternoon on the Island of La Grand Jatte.” Georges Seurat was a French neoimpressionist painter in the 19th
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As mentioned earlier, Seurat’s Un Dimanche à La Grande Jatte is imitated in the background of the painting. This is an imitation of an imitation, which an imitation theorist would be critical of since it is not a direct mockery of life. Plato would be even more critical. Plato believed that what we see on a day-to-day basis is considered the visible realm, and everything we see here is just an imitation of the forms, in the invisible realm. Plato already viewed art as “not only useless and frivolous, but also extremely unrealistic. When painters or sculptors imitate a person, they merely supply us with an image of that person. The image of a person belongs to another order than that of a real human being” (Braembussche). Therefore, if Plato were to view this painting, he would think it to be even more useless than your average painting, because it includes an imitation of an imitation of an imitation. As for the rest of the painting, it is a depiction of human behavior and action, so imitation theorists would hold it with high regard, because it is so well done.
Another way of thinking about this piece is through a feminist lens. The feminist theory seeks justice for women, and promotes a world where men and women are treated equally. In the painting, Seurat painted nude models getting dressed. This was typical for the time period, and this style can be found in many art galleries still today. As Freeland described, “museum