Friday, December 28, 2012

Impressionism: Revenge of the Nice

Impressionism: Revenge of the Nice is a art documentary presented by Matthew Collings, reappraising Impressionism by examining the lives and works of Courbet, Manet, Cezanne and Monet. The art critic and presenter Matthew Collings sets out to re-establish the Impressionists' reputation as revolutionary artists whose paintings sent shock- waves through the art world. In the early 19th century, the art of the establishment was formulaic and inspired by fantasy. Paintings were, by and large, a glorification of the past; by contrast, the Impressionists advocated a kaleidoscopic palette, sweeping brush strokes and a subject matter that was firmly rooted in the everyday. Impressionism, we are told, is the first movement in modern art. Collings's investigation begins with the realist painter Gustave Courbet, a rebel who attacked the government through allegories such as The Painter's Studio, in which a barely disguised Napoleon is depicted as a poacher who stole the Empire. Collings then traces the thread of rebellion through the work of Edouard Manet, Claude Monet and Paul Cezanne. In terms of shock value, he argues, Monet's Impression: Sunset, the painting that gave the movement its name, was on a par with Damien Hirst's shark and Tracey Emin's bed.

Related Links:
The Impressionists: Painting and Revolution
This is Modern Art

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