Seurat's Circus Sideshow

Richard Thomson, Susan Alyson Stein, Charlotte Hale, Silvia A Centeno

Research output: Book/ReportBook


The mystery, color, and magic of the circus was a subject of fascination for European artists in the late 19th and early 20th centuries. The French Post-Impressionist painter Georges-Pierre Seurat (1859–1891) explored this theme in a number of drawings and sketches, as well as in his 1888 Pointillist masterwork, Circus Sideshow. Drawing connections to Parisian street life, to the works of other artists, and to the broader complexities of modern life, this lively book establishes Circus Sideshow as a pioneering work in the genre of circus-themed art. Lush reproductions of the work are buttressed by images of Seurat’s preparatory drawings and ephemera from circuses and street performances of the time to offer a full understanding of the historical context.
Original languageEnglish
Place of PublicationNew Haven
PublisherMetropolitan Museum of Art, New York/Yale University Press
Number of pages144
ISBN (Print)9781588396150
Publication statusPublished - 14 Feb 2017


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