Published: October 2004
Fine arts professor Jeffery Howe has pinned his career to one artist, Fernand Khnopff (1858–1921), a key figure in the 19th-century European symbolist movement. Chief curator of Fernand Khnopff: Inner Visions and Landscapes, a major retrospective at the McMullen Museum of Art on view through December 5, 2004, Howe talks with Boston College Magazine editor Ben Birnbaum about the artist’s place in the history of European painting, about notes found on the backs of some of the paintings when the show was installed, and about Khnopff’s remarkable ability to seamlessly join reality and fantasy. Howe also discusses three of his favorite Khnopff paintings, including The Caresses (left), the work that first attracted him to Khnopff “and was also the hardest to understand. It is Khnopff’s signature image, and one of the most famous symbolist works of the 19th century.”
“Obsession” was filmed at the McMullen Museum in Chestnut Hill, on September 30, 2004.