At the Cirque Fernando

Equestrienne (At the Cirque Fernando), 1864-1901
Henri de Toulouse-Lautrec, French, 1864-1901
Oil on canvas, 39 1/2 x 63 1/2 in. (100.3 x 161.3 cm)
Inscribed lower left: HT Lautrec
Joseph Winterbotham Collection, ARTIC #1925.523
Photo © Joan Ann Lansberry

(From info card)
"This painting is set at the same circus in Montmartre where Pierre-Auguste Renoir painted his portrait of the Wartenberg sisters (on view in Gallery 201). Here Henri de Toulouse-Lautrec captured the tense moment in which a female trick rider prepares to stand up on her horse and leap through a paper hoop held by a clown. The horse gathers speed, whipped on by the circus's famous ringmaster, Monsieur Loyal. The model for the garishly made-up rider, dressed in a tutu of gauze and sequins, may well have been Suzanne Valadon, a former circus performer, model, and aspiring artist, with whom Lautrec would have a nearly three-year relationship. She seems to snarl at Monsieur Loyal, who glares back at her."