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French Painting
THE BACKGROUNDTHE accession of Francis I in 1515 presents a convenient starting point for the study of French painting provided one looks back as well as forward. For it was at this period of coming into touch with the Italian Renaissance that modern France emerged from medievalism.
French Painting - Pre-renaissance Art
THE beginnings of painting in France, as in all the Northern countries, are involved in obscurity. But land is no less real, because it has been uncharted. One detects its vague outlines against the obscurity of the past, while nearer in point of time are conspicuous elevations, arresting and engrossing, notwithstanding that they are nameless.
French Painting - The Early Renaissance
IT was the good fortune of France to receive the wine of Italian culture when she was ready to assimilate its heady strength; when, in fact, she was already a strong and growing nation with a vigorous culture all her own. Other nations were less lucky, at least as far as painting is concerned. England at this period was growing lustily, but her background of culture was only meager.
French Painting - Absolutism And The Sun King
WHEN Louis XIII, a child of nine years old, was raised to the throne in 1610, the country was still torn asunder by Leaguers and Huguenots. The leaders of both factions encroached upon the royal power; there was as yet no middle class strong enough to assert its rights and the masses of the people were practically serfs. Authority existed nowhere.
Poussin And Claude Lorrain
THAT the Italianate convention was less disastrous to France than to other countries is due to two causes. One has already been alluded to : that France had a vigorous native growth in art and literature, ready for fertilization, strong enough to resist absorption. The second cause is to be found in the personality and influence of Nicolas Poussin and, in a less degree, of Claude Lorrain.
The Rococo
IN 1717 Parisians enjoyed two new sensations. Watteau's diploma picture, Embarking for the Island of Cythera, marked his admission to the Academy of Painting and Sculpture and Mlle. Adrienne Lecouvreur made her début at the Comédie Française. Both events were the heralds of a new era. The Grand Monarque, dead two years, had been succeeded by his great grandson, Louis XV, a child of five, with the pleasure-loving Duke of Orleans as Regent.
French Painting - Revolution
IN 1785, about midway between the accession of Louis XVI in 1774 and his execution in 1793, Jacques Louis David exhibited at the Salon The Oath of the Horatii. The following year Marie Antoinette's toy village, Le Hameau, was finished in the Park of Versailles, and the Queen and her ladies of honor played the innocent rôle of dairy maids.
Les Vaillants De Dix-huit-cent-trente
A VERY usual mistake is made of applying the title, The Men of 1830, exclusively to the painters of the Barbizon group; apparently from the notion that this represents the date at which they settled in that village. But Rousseau did not visit the Forest of Fontainebleau until 1833.
Le Juste-milieu
FRENCH Romanticism both in literature and painting was no exception to the rule that Romanticism appears as a protest and is of brief duration. Gusty with passion and inflamed with a love of the unusual, the surprising and the tempestuous, and usually inspired by what seems to be the glamour of the past, it lacks the elements of continuity and advance.
Poetry Of The Paysage Intime
A SECOND time in the story of French painting Fontainebleau becomes the nucleus of a fresh departure. Three centuries earlier Francis I had invited thither Italian artists, thus giving royal indorsement to the inauguration of the French Renaissance. Now a group of artists, settling in Barbizon on the edge of the Forest, developed a new motive : the poetry of the paysage intime.
Millet And Some Others
THE Master Builder of the Barbizon group was Jean Francois Millet. What Rousseau did for pure landscape he extended to include the human subject and advanced Corot's reconciliation of the Natural and Classic into immediate relation with modern life. Like them, he informed the material with the spiritual ; but his imagination was more embracing than Rousseau's, more profound than Corot's.
Realism - G. Courbet
BY the middle of the nineteenth century, in France as well as in England, the achievements of science and mechanics and the newly developed sense of individualism had dominated the spirit of the age. Dogma was discredited; the old belief under-minded; the world was looking for 'truth' in the perceptible facts of knowledge.
Manet And Impressionism
MANET was needed to complete Courbet. The latter had brought the motive of painting into touch with the spirit of the age, leading the painter to look for his subjects in the world of actual sight and to treat them solely in accordance with the facts of nature ; but he had not furnished the example of a technique fitted to represent the vision naturally.
THERE is a certain element of brutality in Monet, as in some other impressionists, to which however Auguste Renoir (1841) presents the extreme of contrast. His art is of exquisite refinement, at once virile and voluptuous ; replete with gaiety, grace and tenderness; supple as well as strong; magisterial, yet caressing.
Neo Impressionism
TO Impressionism has already succeeded Neo Impressionism. One of its adherents, Paul Signac, has summarized the objects of the latter in his 'D'Eugène Delacroix au Neo Impressionnisme'.
SO far in following the progress of modern French painting we have passed unnoticed many a quiet backwater where the artist has liberated his spirit in seclusion from the swift main stream. The present chapter, therefore, shall be in the nature of a retrospect, gathering up some of the personalities that the logic of events compelled us for the time to over-look.
Puvis De Chavannes
PIERRE PUVIS DE CHAVANNES is the most impressive figure of the last quarter of the century. In an age of flux and agitated sensations he pursued with steady persistence the goal to which his instinct and his reason alike impelled him, and eventually dominated by sheer quietude of force.
La Fin De Siècle
EVEN before the last quarter of the century had set in the world was conscious of a mood of spirit which it eventually characterized as fin de siecle. It was compounded of negation and pessimism with resultant mocking and contempt; and of lust of sensation, brutal and bizarre, on the one hand, as the product of gross and brutal naturalism.
Henri Matisse
HENRI MATISSE (1862) has come to be regarded, by outsiders at any rate, as a leader of this movement of 'Wild Men,' partly through the number of his pupils, partly through the clear enunciation of what he believes to be the principles involved. These he explains as simplification, organization and expression.
Paul Cezanne
IN a letter dated a year or so before his death Cézanne wrote: 'I am too old; I have not realized; I shall not realize now. I remain the primitive of the way which I have discovered.' What the way was is summarized by his artist-friend, Émile Bernard, as 'a bridge, thrown across conventional routine, by which impressionism may return to the Louvre and to the life profound.'
Butterflies - Introduction
In popular esteem the butterflies among the insects are what the birds are among the higher animals - the most attractive and beautiful members of the great group to which they belong. They are primarily day fliers and are remarkable for the delicacy and beauty of their membranous wings, covered with myriads of tiny scales that overlap one another like the shingles on a house.
Butterfly Transformations
The butterflies furnish the best known examples of insect transformations. The change from the egg to the caterpillar or larva, from the caterpillar to the pupa or chrysalis, and from the chrysalis to the butterfly or imago is doubtless the most generally known fact concerning the life histories of insects.
Butterflies And Moths
The butterflies and moths both belong to the great order of scale winged insects the Lepidoptera. They are distinguished, however, by certain general characteristics, which hold true for the most part in both groups. The butterflies fly by day; the moths fly by night. All of the higher butterflies go into the chrysalis state without making a silken cocoon.
Scents Of Butterflies
Many students of American butterflies have occasionally mentioned the fact that certain species seem to give off a distinct scent which has frequently been spoken of as a pleasing fragrance, suggesting sandalwood or some other aromatic odor.
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