OIL PAINTING: Holyday, c.1876
Though generally favorable, the British response to Tissot was often tinged with resentment. Many suspected that Tissot made fun of British manners and morals, even of Britishness itself. It remains one of the delights of Tissot's painting to see the Victorians through the eyes of a foreigner. Tissot gives us the outsider's take on life and love in this most modern of modern societies, noticing what the British themselves took for granted, teasing them for their famous respectability and reserve, revealing -- by the lightest of touches -- that they too thought about sex.