Chapter 7 Text

XChapter 7 in BookX


The history of art presents, in every period or generation, examples of men who are in advance of their time, and who, in spite of the restrictions and conventions of the period in whic they were born, contrive to emancipate themselves from all such thraldom and by their native originality create a distinct and independent course for themselves. Such an artist was Auguste Barthelemy Glaize. He was born at Montpelier in 1813, at a time when art in France was chained to the coldest classicism, when the painters were taught to ignore life entirely and to base their studies and their methods upon the antique - a beautiful and noble model, it is true, but cold and lifeless as the sculptured marble in which antique art had been preserved to modern times. These were the influences which surrounded young Glaize when he learned to draw as a schoolboy. But a change was coming. What we now know as the romantic movement in French art was gathering strength. A race of original and resolute men had determined to cast off the shackles imposed by the old order of things, and to ignore traditions with which they had no sympathy. Prominent among these revolutionaries were the brothers, Achilee and Eugene Deveria. They were the sons of a clerk of the Archives in the Department of the Marine in Paris, and while Eugene became a painter Achille became a designer and lithographer. He was born in 1800, and was quite a well known artist by the time Glaize was finishing his schooling. He was one of the greatest original designers on the lithographic stone that ever lived, as eccentric in his personal ways as he was original in his art, but with a large, warm heart. To this man Glaize, as a youth, went to learn lithography, because he could make his living by it while he learned to paint. Eugene Deveria, who lived with his brother, advised and instructed the young fellow in painting. So, in due time, he became an artist, and commenced to exhibit at the Salon. He took medal after medal, received the Legion of Honor in 1855, was commissioned by the Government for many decorations for public places, and prospered out of the sheer force of his genius. His art is excellently represented by "Love's First Step."

The "Prayer to Isis" is one of the famous pictures of Luis Falero which grew out of his study of the antiquities of Egypt. Here a girl performs upon one of those ancient harps over a sounding skin like a drum-head, of which examples have been found by explorers. The instrument which the young child uses are sistrums. They were made of metal, and produced a rattling sound which kept time to the notes of music and the chant of the worshippers.

In French pantomimes they have a character called Pierrot, who is practically equivalent to an English stage clown. He is dressed and made-up as a young boy, and his business on the boards is to be as stupid, simple-minded, cunning, and malicious, and above all funny, as a young boy can be in real life. Pierrette, or Mademoiselle Pierrot, like Pierrot, makes up as a young girl, and behaves as mischievously, though not as stupidly, as he. In the picture by Robaudi he shows one of these femine counterparts of the clown, all silk and satin, who returns from a masked ball and rings for admission into her apartment, holding a trophy of the evening in her hand. The artist is an Italian by birth, a pupil of the Paris art schools, and has his studio in Paris. The example which we present of him was first exhibited in the Salon of 1891.

Georges Pierre Marie Van den Bos, in spite of his name, which smacks strongly of the Netherlands, is a Swiss by birth, and has his studio in Paris. His "Prey of Cupid" serves as a good example of his style.

Jean Benner, the painter of "Reverie," is the twin brother of Emmanuel Benner, several examples of whom have been given in this work. He, like his brother, was a designer for the factories until about thirty years of age, when his savings enabled him to study painting. he went to Italy in `866, after having had instruction in Paris from Pils, Henner, and Leon Bonnat. He had exhibited pictures at the Salon, however, since 1859, and since 1872 has received a number of medals.

"Night" is a decorative and beautiful composition by a Flemish artist, resident in Paris, A. de Courten.

The prohibited book is the one which is always certain to be read. This young person has been commanded not to read a certain novel - and she takes it to bed to read and dream over. Fritz Zuber-Buhler, the artist, was born at Locle, in Switzerland. Locle is a town chiefly devoted to the manufacturing of watches, and as the boy had a taste for drawing he was employed to engrave designs on the cases of the higher priced pocket time pieces. In its small way, this engraving for the jewellers is a profitable business to the employees, so Zuber-Buhler was able in time to go to Paris to study painting. He there was a pupil of Picot and of the Swiss painter Grosclaude, and under them became an accomplished technician, while he developed a power as a colorist quite uncommon with painters of his nationality.

Albert Aublet is a Parisian, a pupil of Jacquand and of Gerome, and made the regular course of a student at the School of Fine Arts. A visit to Constantinople next added subjects of Oriental life to his repertory, and led to the completion, among others, of his "Turkish Woman at the Bath," whose appearance at the Salon in 1883 was received with great applause and materially added to his fame and prosperity.

At the outpost of an Arab camp, the favorite slave girl of the Sheik, with his pet hound, the guardians of his tent, are on the outlook for their master's return from a hunting excursion. The artist, Gaston C. Saintpierre, is a native of Nimes, and studied art in Paris under Cogniet and Jalabert. He made various excursions into Algiers and the deserts of North Africa, from which he returned with a valuable collection of motives. He received his first medal in 1868, and the Legion of Honor in 1881.

The story of Blaise Bukovoc has been given in detail in a previous part of this work. His "White Slave" represents one of the Greek or Circassian girls who were frequently to be found in Turkish harems, into which they came as spoils of war.

The legend of Lorelei, the siren of the Rhine, is one of those which the Germans adopted from classical antiquity and adapted to local surrounding and circumstances. William Kray represesents the lovely and loveless enchantress seated on the craggy summit of the cliff, which is nearly five hundred feet above the level of the stream, bathed in the beams of the moon, and by her alluring glances inviting the hapless boatmen to their destruction.

"Fatima" is another of the always popular feminine types of Nathaniel Sichel of Berlin, a queen of the harem, robed in satin and wearing a headdress of great golden coins and jewels.

Konrad Dielitz is a German portrait and genre painter of high rank. He was born in 1845 in Berlin, and was the son of a well-known literary man. He made his first stroke of fortune as a portrait painter, and the reputation he thus gained brought him an appreciative public for his genre, historical, and legendary compositions. In "The Daughters of the Rhine" he takes up the legend of the water-fairies who guard the fabulous treasures of that picturesque stream, upon which Wagner founded his opera of the "Rheingold."

Jules Lefebvre whose biography has already been given, presents in "Antique Poesy" a young girl who in a poetic competition has won the coveted wreath of honor. In the simple or antique times it was a wreath of fresh laurel. Later it became a wreath of silver in imitation of laurel. It is such a wreath that the figure in the picture means. The practice was continued into medieval times, especially in Italy and France, long after Christianity had spread over Europe and Paganism had completely disappeared from the civilized portions of the world.

Mlle. Marie Rose Vasselon, who was born at Craponne in the Department of the Upper Loire, exhibited in earliest childhood a most astonishing artistic talent. She seemed to learn to draw by instinct, for she had enjoyed no instruction apart from that which was afforded by the pictures and engravings in her home. A Madame Thoret, a very able woman painter of the time, gave her her first actual instruction in art. She then went to Paris, where, while studying in the art school, she also became a student under Carolus Duran and Henner. Her first successes were made in portraiture, but, strongly influenced by Henner, she commenced to make a specialty of the study of the nude, of which "The Bath" is a convincing example. Miss Vasselon shows in her pictures a wonderfully fine appreciation of color, and great accuracy and skill in drawing. Her technique is big, broad, and free, and her execution perfect.

The "Nymphs" of Bouguereau is one of his famous pictures. it is a subject which explains itself.

Chapter 1 Chapter 1
Chapter 2 Chapter 2
Chapter 3 Chapter 3
Chapter 4 Chapter 4
Chapter 5 Chapter 5
Chapter 6 Chapter 6
Chapter 7 Chapter 7
Chapter 8 Chapter 8
Chapter 9 Chapter 9
Chapter 10 Chapter 10
Chapter 11 Chapter 11
Chapter 12 Chapter 12

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