John Singer Sargent: Portraits of the 1890s; Complete Paintings: Volume II

Overview

This gorgeous book is the second volume of the definitive catalogue raisonné of the work of the American painter John Singer Sargent (1856-1925). It comprises over onehundred and fifty formal portraits and portrait sketches in oil and watercolor that he painted between 1889 and 1900. The catalogued works have been grouped into chronological sections, each with its own introduction to set the particular group in context. In addition, an overall introduction places Sargent in the ...
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Overview

This gorgeous book is the second volume of the definitive catalogue raisonné of the work of the American painter John Singer Sargent (1856-1925). It comprises over onehundred and fifty formal portraits and portrait sketches in oil and watercolor that he painted between 1889 and 1900. The catalogued works have been grouped into chronological sections, each with its own introduction to set the particular group in context. In addition, an overall introduction places Sargent in the context of European portraiture of the past and of his own time.

Each work is documented in depth: entries include traditional data about the painting or watercolor; details of the work's provenance, exhibition history and bibliography; a short biography of the sitter; a discussion of the circumstances in which the work was created; and a critical discussion of its subject matter, style, and significance in Sargent's career. With very few exceptions, all the works are reproduced in color. There is also an illustrated inventory of Sargent's studio props and accessories and a cross-referenced checklist of the portraits in which they appear.

Author Biography: Richard Ormond, great nephew of John Singer Sargent, is Samuel H. Kress Professor at the Center for Advanced Study in the Visual Arts, National Gallery of Art, Washington, D.C. Elaine Kilmurray is Research Director of the Sargent catalogue raisonné project.

<%PUBCOMMENTS%>Published for the Paul Mellon Centre for Studies in British Art

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Editorial Reviews

Library Journal
John Singer Sargent: Portraits of the 1890s is the second volume of the definitive Sargent catalogue raisonn , following The Early Portraits by the same authors. The portraits are arranged chronologically, and accompanying entries include biographical information about the sitter as well as a context for most portraits, utilizing contemporary biographical and critical sources. The book's chronology features significant details regarding exhibitions and important social events for the artist from every month of the 1890s. The authors include general background about the technique and condition of each painting. A study of the sitter's clothes and partial studies of subjects are nice additions. Ormond is an independent art historian and great-nephew of Sargent; Kilmurray is research director of the catalogue raisonne. The third and fourth volumes of the Sargent catalogue raisonne are in the works. With high-quality illustrations, most in color, this will be the definitive and most complete scholarly work on Sargent's life works. Sargent and Italy is the catalog from the exhibit scheduled to reach the Los Angeles County Museum of Art (LACMA) and the Denver Art Museum in 2003. This title assembles the paintings Sargent created in Italy during his many vacations there and documents the American painter's fascination with his birthplace. Edited by the chief curator of the Center for American Art at LACMA, the book contains several essays about Sargent's Italian experiences by curators and scholars, including Ormond, accompanied by 85 color and 50 black-and-white images. His watercolors and oils depict dramatic genre scenes of peasants and landscapes of the Italian countryside. Also included are portraits of fellow expatriates and tourists like Henry James and Edith Wharton. Italy was extremely influential on Sargent's work, which makes this a significant addition to books on Sargent. For libraries on a limited budget, John Singer Sargent, a one-volume work edited by Kilmurray and Ormond, would be a good bet, but both of these beautiful and informative new catalogs are highly recommended for libraries with art collections.-Jennifer Mayer, Univ. of Wyoming Libs., Laramie Copyright 2003 Reed Business Information.
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  • Anonymous

    Posted December 6, 2011

    Demands of Sitter vs. Art

    This volume suggests that, as his reputation as a portrait painter flourished, Sargent met well the age old challenge of balancing the demands of the sitter with the higher demands of art itself, which, for him meant the free use of impasto and a free brush stroke. The portraits are utilitarian objects as well as fine works of art.

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