10-Impressionism - 010_Impressionism.doc READINGS:...

Info iconThis preview shows pages 1–2. Sign up to view the full content.

View Full Document Right Arrow Icon
010_Impressionism.doc READINGS: IMPRESSIONISM Background: Eugen Weber, Impressionism Zola, The Realists of the Salon of 1866 Blemont, The Impressionists Zola, Naturalism in the Salon Background: Eugen Weber, IMPRESSIONISM, Movements, Currents, Trends , pp. 194-196. In the plastic arts the rebellion of Realism and Naturalism was continued first by Edouard Manet (t832-1883), then by the Impressionist painters (Bazille, Pissarro, Monet, Sisley, Renoir, etc.). Like Courbet, Manet believed that art should hold a mirror up to life and that too much of the art of his time was anecdotal, allegorical, or moralistic-removed from reality. Moved by similar ideas, Pre- Raphaelites in England and so-called Nazarenes in Germany had tried to remedy this lack in contemporary academic art by turning to a sort of primitivism addled by antiquarian notions of ideal beauty. This was not the way to improve matters. So, where Courbet had reacted against the prevailing idealism by shunning idealized subjects of a morally elevating kind, Manet reacted further against the still-prevalent notion of an ideal style. In doing this he completed in the 1860s the revolution begun by Courbet in the 1850's and stands with the master of Ornans as one of the great pioneers ofthe modern movement. In spite of his pioneering role in art, Manet combined to a curious degree the conformist and the unconventional. Socially conservative, he was politically progressive, a constant opponent of the Second Empire, good friend of Republican figures like Gambetta, Zola, and Jules Ferry, admirer of radicals and revolutionaries like Clemenceau and Rochefort, both of whom he painted. As a young man in 1848 he had sketched those who died for liberty on the barricades; during the Commune of 1871 he was, along with Corot, Courbet, and Daumier, elected to the Federation of Paris Artists; a few years later his offers to cover the walls of the Paris Hotel de Ville with frescoes based on one of Zola's great social poems, Le Ventre de Paris-markets, streets, docks, and stations-remained unanswered but marked none the less the tone of his preoccupations. Yet with all that, Manet always remained the gentleman, divided by birth, taste, and social position, as well as by the limits he set to his revolutionary experiments, from most of his contemporaries. Hence, even though the 1870's called the Impressionists la bande a Manet -Manet's gang-the relation between them was rather coincidental. Both played a large part in introducing the urban landscape into painting, the modern city with its railway stations, factories, canals and music halls, streets and race-courses, cobbles and steam and electric light. Zola saw Manet as a Realistic painter; in the same sense the Impressionists may be called Naturalistic. Like Naturalist writers, Impressionist painters compared nature with the work of admired and accepted masters, and found that x the two did not match. They set out, therefore, to restore truth to painting by accurate; ; analytical observation
Background image of page 1

Info iconThis preview has intentionally blurred sections. Sign up to view the full version.

View Full DocumentRight Arrow Icon
Image of page 2
This is the end of the preview. Sign up to access the rest of the document.

Page1 / 11

10-Impressionism - 010_Impressionism.doc READINGS:...

This preview shows document pages 1 - 2. Sign up to view the full document.

View Full Document Right Arrow Icon
Ask a homework question - tutors are online