21908 - Gustave Courbet Burial at Ornans (1849-1850) -...

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Gustave Courbet Burial at Ornans (1849-1850) - mayor won out, but he led this move of the cemetery and ironically he was the first person to be buried in the cemetery - what Claudette manser points out is tht this is a commemoration not only of a relative but also the victory of progressive forces (over secular forces?) so this was a commemoration of an event that benefited the people, which courbet identify himself with. - He painted the individual people, so that no one was left out…democratic kind of art of the people - Shapiro pointed out that in this art of the people, courbet understandably looked to inspiration from art created by the people, by the popular art, prints that had appeared in local newspapers and illustrations that had appeared documenting certain people and certain events and one of the prints that had appeared recently. ..such as the print of the funeral of apoleon that was shown in class - Rigid juxtaposition of people next to each other - Comparison to El Greco. El Greco’s paintings are traditional types of how the church wanted funerals or burials to be understood. The church wanted people to think of burials as a moment of meetings of the divine and the earthly, the soul of the deceased rises up to heaven and is greeted and welcomed by the virgin mary. - There is no afterlife in Courbet’s painting, compared to Greco’s. Courbet emphasizes the horizontal – low but very very wide, and it’s reinforced by the rocks that echo the horizonal nature of the paintings. Courbet says a burial is a burial, that’s that. They stay dead in the ground, and do not rise into heaven. - He is creating a historical document, because he feels it needs to be memorialized. Conemporary history is just as valid as mythological history or religious history. It is monumentalized because of its scale, and this seemed very horrible to conservative viewers. Stonebreakers - he had painted a few months before burial at ornans, and it too was a very controversial painting when it was exhibited, but because it wasn’t as large, it didn’t cause the same sensation as the burial at ornans. - It was ridiculed by conservative art critics in newspapers (look at the “democritisation de part” p.c. almost every painting was met with caricatures in the press - Courbet’s description of the scene “he was inspired by the site of an old man and a young boy working on a road breaking stones and he was so touched by their poverty that he needed and he felt thaas though he had to portray it as realistically as possible.” “I stopped to watch two men splitting stones in the road, it would be hard to come across an image of greater misery. .trousers made of coarse material, his socks show his heels, the old man is in tattered…young boy is struggling, etc. This is how you start and this is how you end up. For too long we have produced
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This note was uploaded on 03/10/2008 for the course ART 2600 taught by Professor Bernstock, j during the Spring '08 term at Cornell University (Engineering School).

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21908 - Gustave Courbet Burial at Ornans (1849-1850) -...

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