Édouard Manet (French, 1832–1883)
Oil on canvas
74 x 49 1/8 in. (188 x 124.8 cm)
Signed and dated (lower right): éd. Manet. 1863
H. O. Havemeyer Collection, Bequest of Mrs. H. O. Havemeyer, 1929 (29.100.54)
Manet purportedly painted many Spanish subjects because he owned a trunkful of Andalusian costumes that had enormous visual appeal for him. For this depiction of one of the dashing young Spaniards known as majos, Manet's younger brother Gustave donned the same trousers and bolero that Victorine Meurent had worn to pose for Mademoiselle V . . . in the Costume of an Espada (29.100.53). Rejected from the Salon of 1863, both paintings were included in the Salon des Refusés that same year. Manet's robust brushwork and bold color were admired by most critics, but some complained that the majo lacked psychological characterization, Manet having rendered his face and hands with no more attention than he had the details of the costume.