La buveuse d’absinthe exhibited in London

24th of February 2020

La buveuse d’absinthe (The Absinthe Drinker) by Léon Spilliaert will be exhibited in London until 25 May in an exhibition devoted to the artist’s works.

Léon Spilliaert is one of the most important Symbolist painters. He worked mainly on paper, using combinations of watercolours, gouache , pastels and Indian ink, which enabled him to obtain shades of colour and chiaroscuro light that lend a disquieting, mysterious atmosphere to his works.

Between 1907 and 1908, after returning to Ostend from Paris, Spilliaert painted a series of fifteen self-portraits, among which La buveuse d’absinthe can be included stylistically. The work represents a young woman ravaged by her addiction to absinthe, her black eyes lifeless and empty and also revealing the reality of life endured by many artists, writers and musicians of the period. It is the only painting of the period in which a female character is depicted full face.

As one of Léon Spilliaert’s most important works, La buveuse d’absinthe will certainly be one of the highlights of this exhibition in London, alongside over seventy of his other works on paper.  

Practical details
« Léon Spilliaert »
Sackler Wing of Galleries
Royal Academy of Arts
From 23 February to 25 May 2020