Introduction to the Exhibition—Fragonard: The Fantasy Figures
Yuriko Jackall, assistant curator, department of French paintings, National Gallery of Art. Combining art, fashion, science, and conservation, the exhibition Fragonard: The Fantasy Figures brings together for the first time some 14 of the paintings known as the fantasy figures by Jean Honoré Fragonard (1732–1806). Fragonard is considered among the most characteristic and important French painters of his era, and this series—several rapidly executed, brightly colored paintings of lavishly costumed individuals—includes some of his most beloved works. The revelatory exhibition explores the many interpretations of the fantasy figures in the context of the artist's career and elucidates the development of that career, the identity of Fragonard’s sitters and patrons, and the significance of his innovative imagery. To celebrate its opening on October 8, 2017, at the National Gallery of Art, Yuriko Jackall introduces the exhibition, which is on view through December 3, 2017.