After his return to France in 1821, [Théodore] Géricault was inspired to paint a series of ten portraits of the insane, the patients of a friend, Dr. Étienne-Jean Georget, a pioneer in psychiatric medicine, with each subject exhibiting a different affliction. There are five remaining portraits from the series, including Insane Woman. The paintings are noteworthy for their bravura style, expressive realism, and for their documenting of the psychological discomfort of individuals, made all the more poignant by the history of insanity in Géricault’s family, as well as the artist’s own fragile mental health.
Picasso produced hundreds of great paintings; Ralph Ellison wrote one great novel. Art is hard, but literature is murder.
Joe Queenan / One for the Books
The pumpkin carvings of Ray Villafane