Art Appreciation: Jules Breton

This painting, The Song of the Lark, was brought to my attention to Bill Murray, who credits seeing it with reminding him that life is full of second chances. He came across it at a particularly dark time back when he was a struggling young actor in Chicago:

“And so I started walking north. And I ended up in front of the Art Institute of Chicago. And I just walked inside, and I didn’t feel like I had any place being there. They used to ask you for a donation—you know, when you walk into a museum—and I didn’t, I just walked right through, because I was ready to die. And, uhh, pretty much dead.

There’s a painting there, and I don’t even know who painted it, but I think it’s called The Song of the Lark, and it’s a woman working in a field and there’s a sunrise behind her. I’ve always loved this painting, and i saw it that day and I just thought, ‘Well, there’s a girl who doesn’t have a whole lot of prospects but the sun’s coming up anyway, and she’s got another chance at it.” I think that gave me a feeling that I too am a person and get another chance every day the sun comes up.”

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