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Horace Vernet and the Thresholds of Nineteenth-Century Visual Culture
Daniel Harkett, ed.; Katie Hornstein, ed.

Interfaces: Studies in Visual Culture

2017 • 280 pp. 40 illus. 6 1/8 x 9 1/4"
Art History

$40.00 Paperback, 978-1-5126-0042-1
$39.99 Ebook, 978-1-5126-0043-8

Check your ebook retailer or local library for ebook availability.

“Vernet is now experiencing something of a comeback among art historians, as this excellent volume testifies. A major part of its success is due to its tripartite organization, which crosses... [continued in Reviews below]”—Nineteenth-Century French Studies

A fresh look at a pivotal nineteenth-century painter

This collection reconsiders the life and work of Emile Jean-Horace Vernet (1789–1863), presenting him as a crucial figure for understanding the visual culture of modernity. The book includes work by senior and emerging scholars, showing that Vernet was a multifaceted artist who moved with ease across the thresholds of genre and media to cultivate an image of himself as the embodiment of modern France. In tune with his times, skilled at using modern technologies of visual reproduction to advance his reputation, Vernet appealed to patrons from across the political spectrum and made works that nineteenth-century audiences adored. Even Baudelaire, who reviled Vernet and his art and whose judgment has played a significant role in consigning Vernet to art-historical obscurity, acknowledged that the artist was the most complete representative of his age. For those with an interest in the intersection of art and modern media, politics, imperialism, and fashion, the essays in this volume offer a rich reward.

Click here for TABLE OF CONTENTS

Reviews / Endorsements

“Vernet is now experiencing something of a comeback among art historians, as this excellent volume testifies. A major part of its success is due to its tripartite organization, which crosses thresholds . . . between the public image of Vernet, the artist’s attempts to unseat history painting in favor of genre and less antiquated subject matter, and his creative engagement with modern visual technologies. This broad approach, involving essays by well-established specialists as well as early-career researchers, reveals the complexity of the issues at stake.”
Nineteenth-Century French Studies

“Vernet needs – indeed deserves – the wide-ranging reassessment that Horace Vernet and the Thresholds of Nineteenth-Century Visual Culture provides.”


Burlington Magazine

“This collection will introduce scholars and students to the prominent role Horace Vernet played in the visual culture of nineteenth-century France and thereby change the landscape of nineteenth-century studies.” —Darcy Grimaldo Grigsby, U.C. Berkeley

“Horace Vernet is one of the quintessential artists of the first half of the nineteenth century, and this collection of essays creates a detailed and complex picture of a central figure in the art world of his time. This volume makes an original contribution to the study of the artist and his work.”—Richard Wrigley, University of Nottingham

“This book provides a much-needed reexamination of Vernet and helps us to understand why his art met with both huge success and bitter disapproval. In the process, it reveals many of the key assumptions and anxieties that lay beneath nineteenth-century artistic practice. It should revive interest in Vernet.” —David O'Brien, University of Illinois

“This collection of essays by leading scholars about one of the most prominent artists of 19th century France incorporates all of Vernet’s activities, from exhibition strategies to exploring the new medium of the daguerreotype, from taking part in official missions to Algeria to serving as director of the French academy in Rome, and provides valuable insights into the arts in their cultural, political and technical contexts.” —Beth Wright, The University of Texas at Arlington

“Celebrated in his day and then despised for the next 150 years, Horace Vernet has finally met a team of interpreters that do justice to this important and fascinating artistic career. It’s not simply a question of revaluing the career of a forgotten master. Rather Vernet stands, as the volume’s editors well put it, on the threshold of a vast transformation in the European system of the visual arts. From the emergence of new technologies of mass culture to the visual culture of modern imperialism, Vernet was there — a volume of high intellectual importance for the field of nineteenth-century art and its visual culture."
—Marc Gotlieb, Williams College

DANIEL HARKETT is an associate professor of history of art and visual culture at Rhode Island School of Design. KATIE HORNSTEIN is an assistant professor of art history at Dartmouth College.

Thu, 14 Mar 2019 13:08:03 -0500