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Millet's memory

Through the ideation of Gesturism in the 21st century, Sen pays homage to 19th century Millet’s Angelus and his maison atelier in Barbizon.

“In the house and atelier of Jean-François Millet is alive the memory of my husband Jacques Meunier who was loyal to his friends like Sen. In Millet’s house also lives Sen’s memory for Jacques, and Sen’s inspiration from Millet.

“Throughout his life, Jean-François Millet sought to understand the light and find the colours that would interpret life in Barbizon. Sen, in his modern vision, illuminates Ile-de-France with a shimmer that transfigures the exotic world of Millet without betraying it.”

Anne-Marie Meunier Proprietor of Maison-Atelier Jean-Francois Millet, Museum in Barbizon, France

As Sen grew into adulthood in Paris, he discovered the astonishing beauty and efficiency of Haussmann’s architecture that transformed the city from 1854 and 1871. In that same historical epoch, Victor Hugo had written Les Miserables in 1862, depicting how social misery and injustice had haunted urbanised Paris before that. Sen found another such opposite character revealed in Angelus, Millet’s painting of a farmer couple. 

On one side was Haussmann’s rigorous Paris design of a spanking new city architecture, on the other was the incredible Angelus on Millet’s canvas in 1859 showing people’s lives in the twilight of Barbizon. It proved that the power of the brush, colours and nature will always reign beyond any contemporariness.