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Gustave Courbet and Edouard Manet - the Rise of Modernism - Essay Example

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This paper "Gustave Courbet and Edouard Manet - the Rise of Modernism" focuses on the two French artists who made a significant contribution to the rise of modernism. To facilitate an understanding of the trends of their times, it is imperative to attempt a comparative analysis of their lives. …
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Gustave Courbet and Edouard Manet - the Rise of Modernism
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Download file to see previous pages As Gustave was a radical so the subjects of most of his paintings compromised of the most ordinary and humblest of people (Discover France: Online). Though Gustave was devoid of any formal training in art and painting, yet he made immense efforts to acquire the varied techniques requisite for a realistic portrayal of his subjects (Discover France: Online). In consonance with many of the Realist masters, Gustave always attempted to capture something plain in many of his works. He used a very limited palette to achieve this impact (Discover France: Online). The paintings of Gustave are marked by thick layers of paint giving way to compositions that seemed to be simplistic (Getty Museum: Online). The artist confined most of his innovation to the choice of subjects rather than on the painting technique. Actually, Gustave hit hard at the Romantic ideals by painting common people like workers and peasants (Getty Museum: Online). Gustave was a bohemian artist who resented the views of contemporary critics and used to exhibit his paintings in pavilions constructed at his own expense (Discover France: Online). Gustave preferred a dark palette and a rough style to reject the conventional notions of Salon finish (Getty Museum: Online). ...
Edouard Manet was born in a typical Parisian bourgeoisie family in 1832. Very much like Gustave, the real interest of Manet lied in the world of art and not in academic pursuits. Actually, it was his uncle Charles Fournier who nurtured and encouraged his interest in art. It is Edouard Manet who is credited for facilitating the transition from Gustave Courbet’s realism to French Impressionism (MacDonald: Online). Manet, unlike Gustave, believed in a formal exposure to the old and contemporary art and art techniques. This is why he travelled extensively across Italy, Germany and Austria to study the works and techniques of the masters of the yore. However, such an endeavour failed to satisfy the curiosity and zeal of Manet and finally, it was in the works of Goya and Velasquez that he found the requisite answers to his queries (MacDonald: Online). Not to mention, Manet was also inspired by the works of Gustave. Though Manet appreciated the works of the old masters yet he quintessentially believed that the purpose of art in any era is to reflect the contemporary ideas and concepts by using techniques that are current and up to date (MacDonald: Online). It is no wonder that the subjects of Manet, unlike Gustave who opted for the French country life, were predominantly selected from the urban life of his age and times (Art History: Online). However, like Gustave, his subjects were common and simple and rebelled against the prevalent concept of class. Like Gustave, Manet did reject the conventional modelling and perspectives and showed now predilection for the traditional emphasis on illusionism (Art History: Online). Manet’s painting technique avoided tight details and the panache for an accurate pictorial duplication (Art History: Online).  ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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