The essays in this wide-ranging, beautifully illustrated volume capture the theoretical range and scholarly rigor of recent criticism that has fundamentally transformed the study of French Impressionist and Post-Impressionist art. Readers are invited to consider the profound issues and penetrating questions that lie beneath this perennially popular body of work as the contributors examine the art world of late nineteenth-century France—including detailed looks at Monet, Manet, Pissarro, Degas, Cézanne, Morisot, Seurat, Van Gogh, and Gauguin. The authors offer fascinating new perspectives, placing the artworks from this period in wider social and historical contexts. They explore these painters' pictorial and market strategies, the critical reception and modern criteria the paintings engendered, and the movement's historic role in the formation of an avant-garde tradition. Their research reflects the wealth of new documents, critical approaches, and scholarly exhibitions that have fundamentally altered our understanding of Impressionism and Post-Impressionism. These essays, several of which have previously been familiar only to scholars, provide instructive models of in-depth critical analysis and of the competing art historical methods that have crucially reshaped the field.
Contributors: Carol Armstrong, T. J. Clark, Stephen F. Eisenman, Tamar Garb, Nicholas Green, Robert L. Herbert, John House, Mary Tompkins Lewis, Michel Melot, Linda Nochlin, Richard Shiff, Debora Silverman, Paul Tucker, Martha Ward
Mary Tompkins Lewis is Visiting Associate Professor in the Department of Fine Arts at Trinity College, Hartford. She is the author of Cézanne’s Early Imagery (UC Press) and Cézanne.
“The essays in this thorough, beautifully illustrated volume capture the theoretical range of recent criticism. . . . A highly useful anthology.”—Antiques And The Arts Weekly
"This compilation will prove highly useful in its assessment of figure and landscape painting; criticism and exhibition strategies; and social, economic,and political history. Distinct art historical voices are brought together, offering the reader a broad spectrum of approaches to the subject."—Margaret Werth, author of The Joy of Life: The Idyllic in French Art, circa 1900
"The texts that Lewis presents are knowledgeably and intelligently chosen and cover the basic revisionist trends in recent scholarship in a broad and admirably thoughtful way."—Jack Flam, author of Matisse and Picasso: The Story of their Rivalry and Friendship
"Mary Tompkins Lewis's anthology provides a welcome tool not only for courses on Impressionism itself, but also for anyone interested in teaching a methods course in art history."—James Rubin, author of Impressionist Cats and Dogs: Pets in the Painting of Modern Life