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Maxfield Parrish
American, 1870 - 1966

Interlude, 1922
20th Century American Painting
Oil on linen canvas
84 in. x 60 in. (213.36 cm x 152.4 cm)

Lent by the Eastman School of Music of the University of Rochester,  5.97L

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About the Object

Maxfield Parrish, leading illustrator and muralist of the early twentieth century, painted Interlude to hang at the Eastman Theatre in Rochester. Through architect Lawrence Grant White, George Eastman commissioned three murals for the theater, which served as both silent movie palace and philharmonic hall. Interlude was Eastman's favorite, a "peacherina," he wrote White.

The radiant quality of Interlude is due to Parrish's high technical standards and theatrical sense of color–electric reds, vivid purples, and lush apricots.  A shade of cobalt straight from the tube was applied so ingeniously that it became known as "Parrish blue." He painted glaze upon glaze to create a hard photographic finish that betrayed no brush strokes. He fashioned his own props on a lathe–wooden balusters, columns, urns, and lutes–and split quartz into miniature mountains.

Interlude has been moved to the Memorial Art Gallery in order to provide it with more stable temperature and humidity conditions.  In its place at the Eastman Theater is a full-size color reproduction.  

[Gallery label text, 2006]


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