Nineteenth Century Art: A Critical History

Nineteenth Century Art: A Critical History

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In art as in music, literature, philosophy, and political economy, the nineteenth century was a period of questioning, experimentation, discovery, and modernization. From Goya to Blake, from David to Delacroix, from Courbet to Cezanne, artists explored the links between perception and history, and in so doing challenged the prevailing definitions of art and the existing order of society.

First published in 1994, this innovative and groundbreaking survey details the development of a critical perspective in nineteenth-century painting and sculpture. For the revised edition, a new introduction by Stephen F. Eisenman provides a cogent overview of the century, its issues, and its art. Three completely new chapters have been added, which discuss photography and its crucial role in nineteenth-century art; American and German landscape painting and its effect on the growth of romantic nationalism in each country; and Toulouse-Lautrec, whose popular appeal consists both in his work's novel technique and medium and in its exotic sexual perspectives.

Nineteenth Century Art embraces many aspects of the "new" art history -- attention to issues of class and gender, racism, and Eurocentrism -- but it also emphasizes the remarkable vitality and subversiveness of the era's best art. Indeed, nineteenth-century artists addressed many of the aesthetic, political, and moral issues that preoccupy audiences and historians today, such as the relationship between popular and elite culture, and the representation of women and non-European peoples in Western art.

This rich and diverse volume demonstrates that nineteenth-century art remains compelling today because its critical insights have rarely beensurpassed. It will prove of interest not only to the specialist but also to anyone fascinated by the art, history, and culture of the era.


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