French Vaudeville (1937). Everett Shinn (American, 1876-1953). Oil on canvas. New Britain Museum of American Art.
Typical of Shinn’s many paintings of city nightlife, which depict theater and vaudeville performances, French Vaudeville portrays a beautiful young chanteuse onstage. While singing, she seductively lifts one side of her gown to reveal a long stockinged leg, and directs her gaze to a member of the audience. Perhaps the singer is looking at the bass-viola player, who gazes up with rapt attention.
These pocket-sized diaries (1866-1891) belonged to Universalist minister, missionary, and Civil War veteran Quillen Hamilton Shinn. They’re loaded with ministerial notes and daily musings. And they’re beautiful to look at!