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Episode #52: Shock Art: Balthus' Thérèse Dreaming (Season 5, Episode 6)

Episode #52: Shock Art: Balthus' Thérèse Dreaming (Season 5, Episode 6)

Works that we take for granted today as masterpieces, or as epitomes of the finest of fine art, could also have been considered ugly, of poor quality, or just bad when they were first made. With the passage of time comes a calm and an acceptance. But that doesn’t change the fact that there are many works peppered throughout art history that were straight-up shocking to the public when they were first presented decades, or even hundreds of years ago.

Today's work of "shock art" flips the script, from a piece that was accepted (or at least tolerated) in its time, and has since become a rallying point for the #MeToo movement: Balthus’ Thérèse Dreaming.

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Episode Credits

Production and Editing by Kaboonki. Theme music by Alex Davis.  Logo by Dave Rainey. Social media assistance by Emily Crockett. Additional writing and research by Valerie Genzano.

ArtCurious is sponsored by Anchorlight, an interdisciplinary creative space, founded with the intent of fostering artists, designers, and craftspeople at varying stages of their development. Home to artist studios, residency opportunities, and exhibition space Anchorlight encourages mentorship and the cross-pollination of skills among creatives in the Triangle.

Additional music credits

 "New_year" by Yakov Golman is licensed under BY 4.0; "Fae" by Meydän is licensed under BY 4.0; "Principles in Action" by David Hilowitz is licensed under BY-NC 4.0; "Three Ravens" by Axletree is licensed under BY-NC 4.0. Ads: "Effemeah Weeps" by Uncan is licensed under BY 4.0 (The Great Courses); "Jingle Jazz" by Quantum Jazz is licensed under BY-SA 3.0 (Kaboonki).

Links and further resources

Metropolitan Museum of Art: Balthus, Thérèse Dreaming

Metropolitan Museum of Art: Balthus: Cats and Girls—Interview with Curator Sabine Rewald

University of Chicago Press Journals: Balthus's Thérèses

New York Times: We Need to Talk about Balthus

Care2Petition: Metropolitan Museum of Art: Remove Balthus' Suggestive Painting of a Pubescent Girl, Thérèse Dreaming

Frieze: Opinion: Showing Balthus at the Met Isn’t About Voyeurism, It’s About the Right to Unsettle 

Episode #51: Shock Art: Gericault's The Raft of the Medusa (Season 5, Episode 5)

Episode #51: Shock Art: Gericault's The Raft of the Medusa (Season 5, Episode 5)