Catch Free Screenings of French Cancan and Moulin Rouge

For Immediate Release

March 17, 2009

The spectacle of Paris at the end of the nineteenth century is the subject of the “Ooh La La! Montmartre on Film” series at the Sterling and Francine Clark Art Institute. In connection with the exhibition Toulouse-Lautrec and Paris, this series of three films on Saturday afternoons at 2 pm will explore Henri de Toulouse-Lautrec’s bohemian environs including the cafés, cabarets, dancers, and denizens. Admission is free.

In Moulin Rouge (1952, 119 min., not rated) on April 4, Jose Ferrer stars as Toulouse-Lautrec in John Huston’s colorful, swirling tale of the painter’s life around the Montmartre dancehall. This feast for the eyes was nominated for seven Oscars and won for costumes and set design.

On April 11 catch French Cancan (1955, 93 min., in French with subtitles, not rated). Jean Renoir’s great backstage musical stars Jean Gabin as the impresario of the Moulin Rouge, and the director emulates his painter father in love of color, movement, and female flesh.

Baz Luhrmann’s furiously updated musical starts over the top and then keeps going in Moulin Rouge! (2001, 128 minutes, PG-13) on April 18. Nicole Kidman and Ewan McGregor sing and dance and try to keep up with the film’s kinetic, windmill whirl.

Toulouse-Lautrec and Paris marks the first time in over fifteen years that the Clark has on view nearly its entire extraordinary collection of works by the great French painter and printmaker Henri de Toulouse-Lautrec (1864–1901). The exhibition features over eighty remarkable oil paintings, posters, photographs, drawings, and lithographs by Toulouse-Lautrec and his contemporaries. Toulouse-Lautrec and Paris revels in Montmartre’s raucous streets, cabarets, theaters, and circuses—venues frequented by modern artists seeking inspiration from the world of entertainment at the turn of the century. The exhibition showcases Toulouse-Lautrec’s magnificent capacity for both quiet intimacy and theatrical flair in a variety of media. Toulouse-Lautrec and Paris will be on view through April 26.

The Clark is located at 225 South Street in Williamstown. The galleries are open Tuesday through Sunday from 10 am to 5 pm (daily in July and August). Admission is free November 1 through May 31. Admission June 1 through October 31 is $12.50 for adults, free for children 18 and younger, members, and students with valid ID. For more information, call 413-458-2303 or visit


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