manet and the execution of maximilian
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Le Figaro, August 11, 1867 | Albert Wolff, "Gazette du Mexique," pg. 1

[From a letter, signed "X . . . "]

I'm sending you photographs taken at Querétaro after the execution. That is, pictures of Maximilian's servant's waistcoat and frock coat, which the emperor, whose clothing was stolen, wore at the execution, as well as portraits of the firing squad that shot Maximilian. I acquired these photographs from the army's chief doctor who embalmed Maximilian or rather who stuffed him, for he gave him two large, black glass eyes, since he had no blue ones. These photographs were taken in secret. . . .

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

[Four photographs were included, one of which is described below.]

The second [photo] shows us the firing squad for the emperor's execution. It is composed of six soldiers, a corporal, and an officer.

The soldiers have hideous, sinister faces. Their uniform resembles the French uniform: the kepi and the tunic seem to be made of gray cloth, the white leather belt, the pants, which descend to the feet, are of darker material.

The corporal, the one who killed Maximilian, is a very handsome boy; he has a sweet face that contrasts sharply with the lugubrious task he was assigned.

The most curious of the seven is the commanding officer of the firing squad; he is not even eighteen.

 

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manet and the execution of maximilian
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