Modern Art and Modernism: A Critical Anthology

By Francis Frascina; Charles Harrison et al. | Go to book overview

in the 1860s its peculiar force, and perhaps its continuing power of example, is that at the same time as his art turns inward on its own means and materials — clinging, with a kind of desperation, to the fragments of tradition left to it — it encounters and engages a whole contrary iconography. Its subjects are vulgar; the fastidious action of paint upon them does not soften, but rather intensifies, their awkwardness; the painting's purpose seems to be to show us the artifice of this familiar repertoire of modern life, and call in question the forms in which the city contrives its own appearance. Doing so, as we have seen, excluded Manet's art from the care and comprehension of almost all his contemporaries; though whether that is matter for praise or blame depends, in the end, on our sense of the possible, now and then.


References
1
C. MacCabe, "'The Discursive and the Ideological in Film'"; Screen, vol. 19, no. 4, p. 36.
2
A. Corbin, Les Filles de noces. Misère sexuelle et prostitution aux 19e et 20e siècles. Paris, 1978.
3
Pierrot, "'Histoire de la Semaine — Une première visite au Salon'", Les Tablettes de Pierrot, 14 May 1865, p. 11; A. J. Lorentz, Dernier Jour de L'Exposition de 1865, p. 13.
4
See B. Farwell, Manet and the Nude, A Study in Iconography in the Second Empire. Unpublished PhD thesis, University of California at Los Angeles, 1973, pp. 199-204.
5
7 June 1865.
6
See B. Farwell, op. cit., p. 233.
7
L. de Laincel, L'Echo de Provinces, 25 June 1865, p. 3.
8
P. Gille, L'International, 1 June 1865.

-273-

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