Thursday, March 10, 2011

Ernest Meissonier’s Costumes

From Masters in Art: Meissonier, by Gustave Larroumet, 1893.


David Glenn said...

He really liked old stuff.

Anonymous said...

He thought that 19th century was so "prosaic" and generally uninspiring, so he turned his attention to earlier centuries which he found much more appealing.
For Meissonier's fans I'd recommend Gotlieb's book The Plight of Emulation. Not exactly a coffee table monograph, but full of interesting stories about the master and french salon painting in general:

Thomas said...

Argh ! not exactly a cheap book either ! But thanks (I'm a big fan of meissonier).
Also, him and a lot of french painters from this period (Boilly, or Augustin) had numerous flemish paintings in their home. I guess when the contemporary painters where more interested in showing the paint (brushstrokes etc), meissonier and others kept considering painting as something that comes from drawing and communicating. It's weird to see Meissonier next to Van Ghogh in Musée d'Orsay.
But I have to say, James, that we probably have a connection because I've been looking for messonier's books last week and now you write something about him. And it's not the first time it does that!

Michael Oxley said...

The caption under the photo reminds me of what you teach, James: If you don't have a prop, create it! It's also very satisfying to have those props sitting around where you can point to them and say "See that Brocade Overcoat? I made that for painting X".

Making A Mark said...

James - Have you read "The Judgement of Paris: The Revolutionary Decade That Gave the World Impressionism" by Ross King?

It's all about Meisonnier and Manet and is a bit "old guard and young upstart" but is very good on Meisonnier's approach to painting. It's also a fascinating account of Paris in the second half of the nineteenth century. Highly recommended.

James Gurney said...

Katherine, yes, I did read Ross King's book and loved it. It's very well researched, and goes far to revive the awareness of Meissonier.

Howard Pyle owed a lot to Meissonier, thought Pyle himself didn't acknowledge the debt.

Julia Lundman said...

Do you mean that Howard Pyle knew Meissonier or do you mean that he was heavily influenced by him?

The more research I do into the salon and post salon era, the more I find the issues of the time quite similar to our own. It seems the questions I ask myself have all been asked and answered so passionately during that time. It would have been fantastic to have been there to witness it all.

James Gurney said...

Julia, Pyle was strangely dismissive of French academic painters, even though his own work bore remarkable similarities to Detaille and Meissonier in particular. Heather Coyle wrote an essay drawing comparisons between Pyle and certain French academics in the upcoming Pyle catalog.