Muses

Misia Sert (1872 - 1950)

Born in a family of Russian musicians, Misia Godebska studies piano at an early age but refuses to go on a professional career and plays for her own pleasure and friends only. Marrying the director of La Revue Blanche, Thadée Natanson, in 1893, she is introduced to a Parisian artistic avant-garde environment that praises her musical skills and her charismatic beauty. Her second husband Alfred Edwards is immensely rich and Misia leads a luxurious life while she befriends such artists as Serge Diaghilev, Maurice Ravel who dedicates to the muse, La Valse, Marcel Proust, Jean Cocteau and Gabrielle Chanel. When she marries, in 1920, her third and last husband, the painter and decorator José-Maria Sert, she reaches the peak of her magnetic influence, becoming the ‘Reine de Paris’ according to journalists. However, when her husband abandons her, Misia Sert declines, as though, with the end of the Roaring Twenties she had reigned on, came the end of her existence. She falls into drugs and only does her faithful friend Coco Chanel remain by her side and would later, design the beautiful pink dress in which the long lost muse will be buried. Although, Misia Sert had never created anything herself, she greatly contributed to the arts of her time as a patron – she was named the ‘pink muse of the Ballets Russes’ – and as a model for numerous portraits imagined by Auguste Renoir, Edouard Vuillard or Pierre Bonnard

Tags / Misia Sert - Muses - It Women - 1900s - Art - Music - Fashion - Luxury - Patron
Henri de Toulouse-Lautrec, Portrait of Misia Natanson, 1887, oil on canvas, Musée des Beaux Arts, Berne
Henri de Toulouse-Lautrec, Portrait of Misia Natanson, 1887, oil on canvas, Musée des Beaux Arts, Berne
Edouard Vuillard, Misia Natanson, 1897
Edouard Vuillard, Misia Natanson, 1897
La comtesse Etienne de Beaumont, Coco Chanel, Misia, La comtesse Moretti, Mme Chiesa
La comtesse Etienne de Beaumont, Coco Chanel, Misia, La comtesse Moretti, Mme Chiesa
Edouard Vuillard, Valloton chez les Natanson, 1897, oil on board, 37,5 x 27,9 cm
Edouard Vuillard, Valloton chez les Natanson, 1897, oil on board, 37,5 x 27,9 cm
Henri de Toulouse-Lautrec, Portrait of Misia Natanson, 1897,  oil on board laid down on cradled panel, 53 x 40,
Henri de Toulouse-Lautrec, Portrait of Misia Natanson, 1897, oil on board laid down on cradled panel, 53 x 40," cm
Theodore Robinson, Misia au Piano, 1897, oil on canvas, Smithsonian american art museum Washington
Theodore Robinson, Misia au Piano, 1897, oil on canvas, Smithsonian american art museum Washington
Pierre Bonnard, Misia at the Piano, 1902, oil on canvas, H. 46,2 ; L. 39 cm, San Francisco, Collection of Ann & Gordon Getty
Pierre Bonnard, Misia at the Piano, 1902, oil on canvas, H. 46,2 ; L. 39 cm, San Francisco, Collection of Ann & Gordon Getty
Henri de Toulouse-Lautrec, Misia Natanson, 1895
Henri de Toulouse-Lautrec, Misia Natanson, 1895
Henri de Toulouse-Lautrec, Misia Natanson, 1897
Henri de Toulouse-Lautrec, Misia Natanson, 1897
Félix Vallotton, Misia at her desk, 1897, Gouache and pastel varnished on card, H. 35 ; W. 52 cm, L’Annonciade, Musée de Saint-Tropez
Félix Vallotton, Misia at her desk, 1897, Gouache and pastel varnished on card, H. 35 ; W. 52 cm, L’Annonciade, Musée de Saint-Tropez
Félix Valloton, Misia à sa coiffeuse, 1898, Musée d'Orsay, Paris
Félix Valloton, Misia à sa coiffeuse, 1898, Musée d'Orsay, Paris
Pierre-Auguste Renoir, Misia Sert, 1904
Pierre-Auguste Renoir, Misia Sert, 1904
Pierre-Auguste Renoir, Misia Sert, 1904, oil on canvas, 92 x 0,73, National Gallery, London
Pierre-Auguste Renoir, Misia Sert, 1904, oil on canvas, 92 x 0,73, National Gallery, London
Pierre Auguste Renoir, Misia Sert with lap dog, 1906, Barnes Fondation, Merlon Station, Pennsylvannia
Pierre Auguste Renoir, Misia Sert with lap dog, 1906, Barnes Fondation, Merlon Station, Pennsylvannia
Pierre Bonnard, Misia with a pink corsage, 1908, 157 x 117 cm, Private collection
Pierre Bonnard, Misia with a pink corsage, 1908, 157 x 117 cm, Private collection
Pierre Bonnard, Misia, 1908, 145 x 114 cm, Thyssen-Bornemisza Museum
Pierre Bonnard, Misia, 1908, 145 x 114 cm, Thyssen-Bornemisza Museum
Felix Vallotton, Misia Godebska-Natanson, 1898, Bavarian State Gallery of Modern Art, Munich
Felix Vallotton, Misia Godebska-Natanson, 1898, Bavarian State Gallery of Modern Art, Munich
Edouard Vuillard, Madame Eugène Bonnard, Misia and Ida Godebska at Grand Lemps, 1900
Edouard Vuillard, Madame Eugène Bonnard, Misia and Ida Godebska at Grand Lemps, 1900
Henri de Toulouse-Lautres, Madame Thadée Natanson (Misia Godebska) at theater,1895, oil on cardboard, 0,62 x 0,74, Metropolitain of Art, New York
Henri de Toulouse-Lautres, Madame Thadée Natanson (Misia Godebska) at theater,1895, oil on cardboard, 0,62 x 0,74, Metropolitain of Art, New York
Pierre Bonnard, Misia et Edwards assis sur le pont du yacht
Pierre Bonnard, Misia et Edwards assis sur le pont du yacht "Aimée", Musée d'Orsay, Paris
Edouard Vuillard, Misia at the Piano, 1895/ 1896, oil on cardboard, 0,26 x 0,25, Metropolitain of Art, New York
Edouard Vuillard, Misia at the Piano, 1895/ 1896, oil on cardboard, 0,26 x 0,25, Metropolitain of Art, New York
Félix Vallotton, Edouard Vuillard,  Misia Natanson’s brother, Cipa Godebski (standing); Alexandre Natanson, the actress Marthe Mellot, Thadée Natanson and Misia Natanson, photographed by Alfred Natanson, c. 1898, gelatin silver print
Félix Vallotton, Edouard Vuillard, Misia Natanson’s brother, Cipa Godebski (standing); Alexandre Natanson, the actress Marthe Mellot, Thadée Natanson and Misia Natanson, photographed by Alfred Natanson, c. 1898, gelatin silver print
Edouard Vuillard, Misia at the piano, 1897/ 1898, Staatliche Kunsthalle Karlsruhe
Edouard Vuillard, Misia at the piano, 1897/ 1898, Staatliche Kunsthalle Karlsruhe
Jean Edouard Vuillard, Portrait of Misia Godebska Natanson, 1897
Jean Edouard Vuillard, Portrait of Misia Godebska Natanson, 1897
Jean Edouard Vuillard, Portrait of Misia and Thadée Natanson, 1890's
Jean Edouard Vuillard, Portrait of Misia and Thadée Natanson, 1890's
Jean Edouard Vuillard, The nape of Misia's neck, 1897/ 1899, oil on cardboard, 13 x 33 cm, Private collection
Jean Edouard Vuillard, The nape of Misia's neck, 1897/ 1899, oil on cardboard, 13 x 33 cm, Private collection
Edouard Vuillard, Henri De Toulouse-Lautrec in His Studio with Misia Natanson, 1895
Edouard Vuillard, Henri De Toulouse-Lautrec in His Studio with Misia Natanson, 1895
Misia Sert in the Galleria dell' Academia, Venice 1947
Misia Sert in the Galleria dell' Academia, Venice 1947
Pierre Bonnard, Misia with Thadée Natanson, 1902 oil on canvas, Musée d'Art Moderne, Bruxssells, Belgium
Pierre Bonnard, Misia with Thadée Natanson, 1902 oil on canvas, Musée d'Art Moderne, Bruxssells, Belgium
Pierre Bonnard, La maison de Misia, 1904, oil on canvas, Musée d’Orsay, Paris
Pierre Bonnard, La maison de Misia, 1904, oil on canvas, Musée d’Orsay, Paris
Pierre Bonnard, Misia Godebske Writing, 1895
Pierre Bonnard, Misia Godebske Writing, 1895
Édouard Vuillard, Misia Natanson sur le perron de La Croix-des Gardes, Cannes, 1901
Édouard Vuillard, Misia Natanson sur le perron de La Croix-des Gardes, Cannes, 1901
Edouard Vuillard, Conversation (Le pot de grès), 1895, Oil on Canvas, 66 x 114 cm
Edouard Vuillard, Conversation (Le pot de grès), 1895, Oil on Canvas, 66 x 114 cm
Edouard Vuillard, Misia and Vallotton at Villeneuve, 1899, Oil on cardboard, 72 x 53 cm, Collection of William Kelly Simpson
Edouard Vuillard, Misia and Vallotton at Villeneuve, 1899, Oil on cardboard, 72 x 53 cm, Collection of William Kelly Simpson
Edouard Vuillard, Thadée and Misia Natanson in their apartment, Rue Saint-Florentin, Paris, 1897/ 1899
Edouard Vuillard, Thadée and Misia Natanson in their apartment, Rue Saint-Florentin, Paris, 1897/ 1899
Edouard Vuillard, Misia, 1897/ 1899, Oil on cardboard, 33.5 x 39.5 cm, Neffe-Degandt Ltd., London
Edouard Vuillard, Misia, 1897/ 1899, Oil on cardboard, 33.5 x 39.5 cm, Neffe-Degandt Ltd., London
Henri de Toulouse-Lautrec, Poster for La Revue Blanche,1895, Colour lithograph, brushwork, pencil and crachis, © Bibliothèque Nationale de France, Paris
Henri de Toulouse-Lautrec, Poster for La Revue Blanche,1895, Colour lithograph, brushwork, pencil and crachis, © Bibliothèque Nationale de France, Paris
Edouard Vuillard, Le salon aux trois lampes, rue St-Florentin, 1899, oil on canvas, 58 x 94 cm, Paris, musée d'Orsay
Edouard Vuillard, Le salon aux trois lampes, rue St-Florentin, 1899, oil on canvas, 58 x 94 cm, Paris, musée d'Orsay
Jean Edouard Vuillard, Misia Sert Natanson, 1897
Jean Edouard Vuillard, Misia Sert Natanson, 1897
Jean Edouard Vuillard, Madame Misia Sert Natanson, date unknown
Jean Edouard Vuillard, Madame Misia Sert Natanson, date unknown
Edouard Vuillard, Henri De Toulouse-Lautrec in his Studio with Misia Natanson, 1895
Edouard Vuillard, Henri De Toulouse-Lautrec in his Studio with Misia Natanson, 1895
Edouard Vuillard, Henri De Toulouse-Lautrec in his Studio with Misia Natanson, 1895
Edouard Vuillard, Henri De Toulouse-Lautrec in his Studio with Misia Natanson, 1895
Edouard Vuillard, Portrait of Henri De Toulouse-Lautrec  with Misia Natanson, 1896
Edouard Vuillard, Portrait of Henri De Toulouse-Lautrec with Misia Natanson, 1896
Edouard Vuillard. In front of a Tapestry, portrait of Misia and Thadee Nathanson, Rue St. Florentin, 1899
Edouard Vuillard. In front of a Tapestry, portrait of Misia and Thadee Nathanson, Rue St. Florentin, 1899
Jean Édouard Vuillard, Portrait of Madame Misia Godebska Natanson, 1890's
Jean Édouard Vuillard, Portrait of Madame Misia Godebska Natanson, 1890's
Jean Édouard Vuillard, Portrait of Madame Misia Godebska Natanson, 1900
Jean Édouard Vuillard, Portrait of Madame Misia Godebska Natanson, 1900
Thadee Natanson and  Misia in their house in Villeneuve-sur-Yonne, France, 1898
Thadee Natanson and Misia in their house in Villeneuve-sur-Yonne, France, 1898
Alfred Natanson, Lunch at Le Relais in Villeneuve-sur-Yonne: Cipa Godebski, Marthe Mellot, Thadée Natanson, a servant, Edouard Vuillard, Misia Natanson, Romain Coolus, Ida Godebska, Alfred Athis Natanson, Circa 1898-1899 © Musée d’Orsay
Alfred Natanson, Lunch at Le Relais in Villeneuve-sur-Yonne: Cipa Godebski, Marthe Mellot, Thadée Natanson, a servant, Edouard Vuillard, Misia Natanson, Romain Coolus, Ida Godebska, Alfred Athis Natanson, Circa 1898-1899 © Musée d’Orsay
Edouard Vuillard, Misia Sert and her niece, Mimi Godebska- The Black Cups, 1925 (reworked in 1934-37), Tempera on canvas, Collection Neffe-Degandt Ltd
Edouard Vuillard, Misia Sert and her niece, Mimi Godebska- The Black Cups, 1925 (reworked in 1934-37), Tempera on canvas, Collection Neffe-Degandt Ltd
Edouard Vuillard, Misia Natanson seen in profile in a carriage, Cannes,1901, Gelatin silver print © Archives Vuillard, Paris
Edouard Vuillard, Misia Natanson seen in profile in a carriage, Cannes,1901, Gelatin silver print © Archives Vuillard, Paris
Misia Natanson in a black dress, 1896-1897 © Archives Vuillard, Paris
Misia Natanson in a black dress, 1896-1897 © Archives Vuillard, Paris
Portrait of Misia Godebska-Natanson, 1900's
Portrait of Misia Godebska-Natanson, 1900's
Portrait of Misia Godebska-Natanson, 1910's
Portrait of Misia Godebska-Natanson, 1910's
Coco Chanel and Madame Misia Godebska Natanson Sert, 1910's
Coco Chanel and Madame Misia Godebska Natanson Sert, 1910's
Edouard Vuillard, Misia Natanson, Cannes,1901, Gelatin silver print © Archives Vuillard, Paris
Edouard Vuillard, Misia Natanson, Cannes,1901, Gelatin silver print © Archives Vuillard, Paris
Edouard Vuillard , Misia Sert and her Niece (preparatory sketch),1925, glue-based distemper and pastel on paper, mounted on canvas, 140.5 × 180.0 cm, Private Collection
Edouard Vuillard , Misia Sert and her Niece (preparatory sketch),1925, glue-based distemper and pastel on paper, mounted on canvas, 140.5 × 180.0 cm, Private Collection
Pierre Bonnard, Misia Natanson at breakfast, 1899, 32 x 41 cm, Private collection
Pierre Bonnard, Misia Natanson at breakfast, 1899, 32 x 41 cm, Private collection
Pierre Bonnard, Misia with roses, 1908, 114 x 146 cm, Private collection
Pierre Bonnard, Misia with roses, 1908, 114 x 146 cm, Private collection
Edouard Vuillard, Misia at the Piano, 1899, oil on board, 55 x 80 cm, Private collection
Edouard Vuillard, Misia at the Piano, 1899, oil on board, 55 x 80 cm, Private collection
Edouard Vuillard and Misia, 1900's
Edouard Vuillard and Misia, 1900's
Misia Natanson, 1899
Misia Natanson, 1899
Edouard Vuillard, Misia assise dans une bergère, dit Nonchaloir, oil on canvas, 1901
Edouard Vuillard, Misia assise dans une bergère, dit Nonchaloir, oil on canvas, 1901
Henri Toulouse-Lautrec,  Dinner at the House of M. and Mme Nathanson, 1898, gouache oil and pastel on cardboard, Museum of Fine Arts, Boston
Henri Toulouse-Lautrec, Dinner at the House of M. and Mme Nathanson, 1898, gouache oil and pastel on cardboard, Museum of Fine Arts, Boston
Pierre Bonnard, Misia on a Divan, 1907/ 1914, oil on canvas, Musée d'Orsay, Paris
Pierre Bonnard, Misia on a Divan, 1907/ 1914, oil on canvas, Musée d'Orsay, Paris
Pierre Bonnard, Poster for La Revue Blanche, 1894
Pierre Bonnard, Poster for La Revue Blanche, 1894
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