Impressionism

Parkstone International
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Free sample

“I paint what I see and not what it pleases others to see.” What other words than these of Édouard Manet, seemingly so different from the sentiments of Monet or Renoir, could best define the Impressionist movement? Without a doubt, this singularity was explained when, shortly before his death, Claude Monet wrote: “I remain sorry to have been the cause of the name given to a group the majority of which did not have anything Impressionist.” In this work, Nathalia Brodskaïa examines the contradictions of this late 19th-century movement through the paradox of a group who, while forming a coherent ensemble, favoured the affirmation of artistic individuals. Between academic art and the birth of modern, non-figurative painting, the road to recognition was long. Analysing the founding elements of the movement, the author follows, through the works of each of the artists, how the demand for individuality gave rise to modern painting.
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Additional Information

Publisher
Parkstone International
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Published on
May 10, 2014
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Pages
313
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ISBN
9781783103881
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Language
English
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Genres
Art / European
Art / General
Art / History / Modern (late 19th Century to 1945)
Art / Techniques / Oil Painting
Art / Techniques / Watercolor Painting
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Eligible for Family Library

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From T.J. Clark comes this provocative study of the origins of modern art in the painting of Parisian life by Edouard Manet and his followers.

The Paris of the 1860s and 1870s was a brand-new city, recently adorned with boulevards, cafés, parks, Great Exhibitions, and suburban pleasure grounds—the birthplace of the habits of commerce and leisure that we ourselves know as "modern life." A new kind of culture quickly developed in this remade metropolis, sights and spectacles avidly appropriated by a new kind of "consumer": clerks and shopgirls, neither working class nor bourgeois, inventing their own social position in a system profoundly altered by their very existence. Emancipated and rootless, these men and women flocked to the bars and nightclubs of Paris, went boating on the Seine at Argenteuil, strolled the island of La Grande-Jatte—enacting a charade of community that was to be captured and scrutinized by Manet, Degas, and Seurat.
     It is Clark's cogently argued (and profusely illustrated) thesis that modern art emerged from these painters' attempts to represent this new city and its inhabitants. Concentrating on three of Manet's greatest works and Seurat's masterpiece, Clark traces the appearance and development of the artists' favorite themes and subjects, and the technical innovations that they employed to depict a way of life which, under its liberated, pleasure-seeking surface, was often awkward and anxious.
     Through their paintings, Manet and the Impressionists ask us, and force us to ask ourselves: Is the freedom offered by modernity a myth? Is modern life heroic or monotonous, glittering or tawdry, spectacular or dull? The Painting of Modern Life illuminates for us the ways, both forceful and subtle, in which Manet and his followers raised these questions and doubts, which are as valid for our time as for the age they portrayed. 
Once the State-run Salon in Paris closed, an array of independent Salons mushroomed starting with the French Artists Salon and Women’s Salon in 1881 followed by the Independent Artists’ Salon, National Salon of Fine Arts and Autumn Salon. Offering an unparalleled choice of art identities and alliances, together with undreamed-of opportunities for sales, commissions, prizes and art criticism, these great Salons guaranteed the centripetal and centrifugal power of Paris as the “modern art centre”. Lured by the prospect of being exhibited annually in Salons the size of Biennales today, a huge number and national diversity of artists, from the Australian Rupert Bunny to the Spaniards Pablo Picasso and Juan Gris, flocked to Paris.

Yet by no means were these Salons equal in power, nor did they work consensually to forge this “modern art centre”. Formed on the basis of their different cultural politics, constantly they rivalled one another for State acquisitions and commissions, exhibition places and spaces, awards, and every other means of enhancing their legitimacy. By no means were the avant-garde salons those that most succeeded. Instead, as this culturo-political history demonstrates, the French Artists’ and National Fine Art Salons were the most successful, with the genderist French Artists' Salon being the most powerful and “official”. Despite the renown today of Neo-Impressionism, Art Nouveau, Fauvism, Cubism and Orphism, the most powerful artists in this “modern art centre” were not Sonia Delaunay, Émile Gallé, Paul Signac, Henri Matisse or even Picasso but such Academicians as Léon Bonnat, William Bouguereau, Fernand Cormon, Edouard Detaille, Gabriel Ferrier, Jean-Paul Laurens, Luc-Oliver Merson and Aimé Morot, who exhibited at the “official” Salon supported by the machinery of the State.

In its exposure of the rivalry, conflict and struggle between the Salons and their artists, this is an unprecedented history of dissension. It also exposes how, just below the welcoming internationalist veneer of this “modern art centre”, intense persecutionist paranoia lay festering. Whenever France’s “civilizing mission” seemed culturally, commercially or colonially threatened, it erupted in waves of nationalist xenophobia turning artistic rivalry into bitter enmity. In exposing how rivals became transmuted into conspirators, ultimately this book reveals a paradox resonant in histories that celebrate the international triumph of French modern art: that this magnetic “centre”, which began by welcoming international modernists, ended by attacking them for undermining its cultural supremacy, contaminating its “civilizing mission” and politically persecuting the very modernist culture for which it has received historical renown.

A founder of French Impressionist painting and the most prolific practitioner of the movement's philosophy of expressing one's perceptions before nature, Claude Monet created a large body of works, developing his own method of producing repeated studies of the same motif in a series, whilst changing canvases with the shift in light. Delphi’s Masters of Art Series presents the world’s first digital e-Art books, allowing readers to explore the works of great artists in comprehensive detail. This volume presents over 500 paintings of the Impressionist master. For all art lovers, this stunning collection offers a beautiful feast of images by one of the most influential artists of the twentieth century. (Version 2)
Features:
* over 500 paintings, indexed and arranged in chronological order
* special ‘Highlights’ section, with concise introductions to the masterpieces, giving valuable contextual information
* beautiful 'detail' images, allowing you to explore Monet's celebrated works
* numerous images relating to Monet’s life and works
* learn about the history of the Impressionists and the celebrated works that shaped the art movement in the detailed biography THE FRENCH IMPRESSIONISTS by Camille Mauclair
* hundreds of images in stunning colour - highly recommended for tablets, iPhone and iPad users, or as a valuable reference tool on eReaders

Please visit: www.delphiclassics.com for more information and to browse our range of titles.

CONTENTS:

The Highlights
LUNCHEON ON THE GRASS
SELF PORTRAIT WITH A BERET
THE TERRACE AT SAINTE-ADRESSE
WOMEN IN THE GARDEN
BATHERS-AT-LA-GRENOUILLÈRE
ON THE BANK OF THE SEINE, BENNECOURT
THE MAGPIE
POPPIES BLOOMING
WOMAN WITH A PARASOL
IMPRESSION, SUNRISE
GARE SAINT LAZARE, ARRIVAL OF A TRAIN
IN THE WOODS AT GIVERNY BLANCHE HOSCHEDÉ
HAYSTACKS, (SUNSET)
ROUEN CATHEDRAL, FAÇADE (SUNSET)
BRIDGE OVER A POND OF WATER LILIES
HOUSES OF PARLIAMENT, LONDON
WATER LILIES
THE GRAND CANAL, VENICE
NYMPHEAS
THE ROSE-WAY IN GIVERNY

The Paintings
THE PAINTINGS IN CHRONOLOGICAL ORDER
ALPHABETICAL LIST OF PAINTINGS

The Biography
THE FRENCH IMPRESSIONISTS by Camille Mauclair

Please visit: www.delphiclassics.com for more information
For Claude Monet the designation ‘impressionist’ always remained a source of pride. In spite of all the things critics have written about his work, Monet continued to be a true impressionist to the end of his very long life. He was so by deep conviction, and for his Impressionism he may have sacrificed many other opportunities that his enormous talent held out to him. Monet did not paint classical compositions with figures, and he did not become a portraitist, although his professional training included those skills. He chose a single genre for himself, landscape painting, and in that he achieved a degree of perfection none of his contemporaries managed to attain. Yet the little boy began by drawing caricatures. Boudin advised Monet to stop doing caricatures and to take up landscapes instead. The sea, the sky, animals, people, and trees are beautiful in the exact state in which nature created them – surrounded by air and light. Indeed, it was Boudin who passed on to Monet his conviction of the importance of working in the open air, which Monet would in turn transmit to his impressionist friends. Monet did not want to enrol at the Ecole des Beaux-Arts. He chose to attend a private school, L’Académie Suisse, established by an ex-model on the Quai d’Orfèvres near the Pont Saint-Michel. One could draw and paint from a live model there for a modest fee. This was where Monet met the future impressionist Camille Pissarro. Later in Gleyre’s studio, Monet met Auguste Renoir Alfred Sisley, and Frédéric Bazille. Monet considered it very important that Boudin be introduced to his new friends. He also told his friends of another painter he had found in Normandy. This was the remarkable Dutchman Jongkind. His landscapes were saturated with colour, and their sincerity, at times even their naïveté, was combined with subtle observation of the Normandy shore’s variable nature. At this time Monet’s landscapes were not yet characterized by great richness of colour. Rather, they recalled the tonalities of paintings by the Barbizon artists, and Boudin’s seascapes. He composed a range of colour based on yellow-brown or blue-grey. At the Third Impressionist Exhibition in 1877 Monet presented a series of paintings for the first time: seven views of the Saint-Lazare train station. He selected them from among twelve he had painted at the station. This motif in Monet’s work is in line not only with Manet’s Chemin de fer (The Railway) and with his own landscapes featuring trains and stations at Argenteuil, but also with a trend that surfaced after the railways first began to appear. In 1883, Monet had bought a house in the village of Giverny, near the little town of Vernon. At Giverny, series painting became one of his chief working procedures. Meadows became his permanent workplace. When a journalist, who had come from Vétheuil to interview Monet, asked him where his studio was, the painter answered, “My studio! I’ve never had a studio, and I can’t see why one would lock oneself up in a room. To draw, yes – to paint, no”. Then, broadly gesturing towards the Seine, the hills, and the silhouette of the little town, he declared, “There’s my real studio.”Monet began to go to London in the last decade of the nineteenth century. He began all his London paintings working directly from nature, but completed many of them afterwards, at Giverny. The series formed an indivisible whole, and the painter had to work on all his canvases at one time. A friend of Monet’s, the writer Octave Mirbeau, wrote that he had accomplished a miracle. With the help of colours he had succeeded in recreating on the canvas something almost impossible to capture: he was reproducing sunlight, enriching it with an infinite number of reflections. Alone among the impressionists, Claude Monet took an almost scientific study of the possibilities of colour to its limits; it is unlikely that one could have gone any further in that direction.
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