Impressionism, Fashion, and Modernity

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Overview

This volume is the first to explore fashion as a critical aspect of modernity, one that paralleled and many times converged with the development of Impressionism, starting in the 1860s and continuing through the next two decades, when fashion attracted the foremost writers and artists of the day. Although they have depicted fashionable subjects throughout history, for many artists and writers, including Charles Baudelaire, Stéphane Mallarmé, Émile Zola, Gustave Caillebotte, Edgar Degas, Édouard Manet, Claude ...

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Overview

This volume is the first to explore fashion as a critical aspect of modernity, one that paralleled and many times converged with the development of Impressionism, starting in the 1860s and continuing through the next two decades, when fashion attracted the foremost writers and artists of the day. Although they have depicted fashionable subjects throughout history, for many artists and writers, including Charles Baudelaire, Stéphane Mallarmé, Émile Zola, Gustave Caillebotte, Edgar Degas, Édouard Manet, Claude Monet, Berthe Morisot, and Pierre-Auguste Renoir, fashion became integral to the search for new literary and visual expression. In a series of essays that examine fashion and its social, cultural, and artistic context during some of the most important years of the Impressionist era—years that also gave birth to the modern fashion industry—a group of fifteen scholars, drawn from five interdisciplinary fields, examine approximately 140 Impressionist-era artworks, including those by dedicated fashion portraitists, in light of the rise of the department store, new working methods for designing clothing, and new social and technological changes that led to the democratization of fashion and, simultaneously, its ascendance as a vehicle for modernity.

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Editorial Reviews

The New York Times - Roberta Smith

“[A] thrilling, erudite show . . . [an] excellent catalog.”—Roberta Smith, The New York Times 
Ornament Magazine - Kimberly Chrisman-Campbell

"Readers will be swept along by the book's lavish images . . . this is the rare exhibition catalogue that is not only as good as being there, but even better."—Kimberly Chrisman-Campbell, Ornament Magazine
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780300184518
  • Publisher: Art Institute of Chicago
  • Publication date: 11/27/2012
  • Pages: 336
  • Product dimensions: 9.30 (w) x 12.30 (h) x 1.20 (d)

Meet the Author


Gloria Groom is the David and Mary Winton Green Curator of Nineteenth-Century European Painting and Sculpture at the Art Institute of Chicago.
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  • Posted April 11, 2013

    This is the most amazing and comprehensive view of impressionism

    This is the most amazing and comprehensive view of impressionism, the modern city and the birth of our consumer society. It suscinctly demonstrates that the Humanities are all encompassing. Impressionism wasn't just about art, it was about painting fashion and fueling an economy, about the new city, about the application of new technology, about marketing principles, about feminism and, while I could go on, when you see this gorgeous book and read the accompanying most relevant text, you pretty much get what was going on and how it changed Western civilization. If you want more, I'd suggest Zola's Au Bonheur des Dames about the Bon Marche, Baudelaire's Painter of Modern life and Stuart Ewen's All Consuming Images on style. (And if you're a Mr. Selfridge fan, reading Zola will give you the real story.)

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