In a Cafe, or The Absinthe

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1875-1876, Musée d'Orsay, Paris, France. In a cafe, a fashionable meeting place, a man and a woman, although seated side by side, are each in their walled silent isolation: the place is identified, it is "The New Athens", in Pigalle, meeting place of modern artists, intellectual center of bohemia. The framing gives the feeling of a snapshot taken on the spot by a witness at a nearby table. But this impression is misleading because the real effect is the result of careful preparation. The painting was painted in the studio, not on site.

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