Gauguin’s ‘Paradise’ spotlights artist’s scandals


“Gauguin’s Paradise,” directed by Fred Curchack, dramatizes the life of controversial post-impressionist painter Paul Gauguin and premiers at 8 p.m. March 26 in the University Theater

Using both theatrical technique and a variety of visual media, such as masks, puppets and video, Curchack incorporates Gauguin’s personal letters and paintings to illustrate the artist’s scandalous legend.

Gauguin spent a sultry hiatus in Tahiti, where he suffered from a case of syphilis he contracted while cavorting with teenage island girls. He also struggled with poverty, attempted suicide, fought for native rights and painted some of the greatest masterpieces in the history of art.

Curchack says that he hopes that UTD students will be “shocked and skeptical” of the subjects brought up in Gauguin’s Paradise, which include adultery, bastardization of his children and deserting his friend Vincent Van Gogh, driving him to cut off his ear.

The portrayal of Gauguin’s proclivities is meant to evoke different responses from individuals in the audience, and to have them look beyond their face value.


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