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The Making of Seurat's 'La Grande Jatte'

A new exhibit in Chicago focuses on a single painting -- Georges Seurat's groundbreaking, A Sunday on La Grande Jatte. The show features the trial-and-error preparations that led up to Seurat's masterpiece. NPR's Susan Stamberg reports on the exhibition, which opens Saturday at the Art Institute of Chicago and runs through Sept. 19.

Curator Douglas Druick says Seurat was aiming for art that was both contemporary and timeless.

In his 1984 musical Sunday in the Park With George, composer Stephen Sondheim imagined Seurat making the painting. Druick says Sondheim did with his music what Seurat did with Impressionism: "He took something that was wonderful and paid homage to it, and he made it into something else."

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Nationally renowned broadcast journalist Susan Stamberg is a special correspondent for NPR.