Paris was the centre of the art world in the nineteenth century and a magnet for American art students and artists, particularly after the 1860s. They flocked to the studios of artists like Gerome and Bouguereau, longed to show their work at the annual Paris Salon, and watched developments such as the unfolding of Impressionism with fascination (and sometimes with horror). Hardly an American painter was unaffected by developments in Paris, and even those who chose not to study there wanted their work to be affirmed by French audiences. This beautifully produced book traces the role of American artists in Paris from the Salon des Refuses, in 1863, to the emergence of a uniquely American style of painting. It includes iconic images by Sargent, Whistler, Cassatt and Winslow Homer, and introduces many new names. More than 80 exhibited paintings are discussed in three generously illustrated essays by Kathleen Adler, Erica E. Hirshler and H. Barbara Weinberg. These explore why artists were drawn to Paris, how they responded to the art that they found there, and what they retained of their experience.
Briefer essays by David Park Curry, Rodolphe Rapetti and Christopher Riopelle examine the significance of the Expositions Universelles; the French view of American artists in Paris, and the role these artists played in shaping the great US collections of modern French painting. The essays are followed by a biography for each artist, an annotated list of works and a full bibliography and index. Published to accompany the exhibition Americans in Paris 1860 - 1900, showing at the National Gallery, London, 22 February - 21 May 2006, the Museum of Fine Art, Boston, 25 June - 24 September 2006, and the Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York, 16 October 2006 - 28 January 2007.
Publisher: National Gallery Company Ltd