Reconsidering Gerome

Overview

Jean-Léon Gérôme (1824-1904) was an undisputed professional success during his lifetime. Crowds flocked to see his vividly rendered historical and Orientalist compositions, and thanks to the mass marketing of his work through mechanical reproduction, he reached audiences on an unprecedented scale.

From the outset, however, his success met with critical hostility. Émile Zola, champion of Édouard Manet, dismissed Gérôme as a cynical manufacturer of anecdotal images for popular ...

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Overview

Jean-Léon Gérôme (1824-1904) was an undisputed professional success during his lifetime. Crowds flocked to see his vividly rendered historical and Orientalist compositions, and thanks to the mass marketing of his work through mechanical reproduction, he reached audiences on an unprecedented scale.

From the outset, however, his success met with critical hostility. Émile Zola, champion of Édouard Manet, dismissed Gérôme as a cynical manufacturer of anecdotal images for popular consumption—a critique repeatedly echoed by historians of modern art. In light of revisionist and postmodern trends over the past four decades, however, Gérôme’s work is now being approached with unprecedented seriousness and refreshing creativity. The ten essays in this volume go far in challenging critical biases against the artist and suggesting new avenues of research. These papers indeed suggest that we are just beginning to learn how to “read” Gérôme’s paintings in their full complexity.

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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
"Refocusing attention on the work of Gérôme, long dismissed as an antihero of modernism, this groundbreaking publication puts a new critical spin on aspects of his art once reviled - his popular appeal and the attendant mass reproduction of his paintings, his zeal for anthropological accuracy, his pictorial narrative techniques, and his cinematic imagination." - Petra ten-Doesschate Chu, Professor, Seton Hall University

 “Opens the field to fresh scholarship.”—The Burlington Magazine

“This engaging group of perspectives ‘by this younger generation of scholars’ attempts to redefine key terms and practices and contests the notion that Gérôme’s detailed images were intended for merely ‘passive consumption.’”—H-France Review 

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781606060384
  • Publisher: Getty Publications
  • Publication date: 9/14/2010
  • Pages: 168
  • Product dimensions: 6.00 (w) x 9.40 (h) x 0.40 (d)

Meet the Author

Scott Allan is assistant curator in the Department of Paintings at the J. Paul Getty Museum. Mary Morton, former associate curator in the same department, is curator of French painting at the National Gallery of Art, Washington, D.C., and editor of Oudry’s Painted Menagerie: Portraits of Exotic Animals in Eighteenth-Century Europe (Getty Publications, 2007) and coauthor of Courbet and the Modern Landscape (Getty Publications, 2006).

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