Conférence : « Facing the Academy : Portrait Painters as Members of the Académie Royale, 1737–1789 »

Jean-Laurent Mosnier, Self-portrait, 1786, State Hermitage, Saint Petersburg

Type : Conférence
Date et heure : 5 juin 2018 à 18h
Lieu : Centre Allemand d’Histoire de l’Art (DFK), 45 rue des Petits-Champs, Paris

Conférence en anglais proposée par Gerrit Walczak, Universität Greifswald

Portrait painters were the largest and commercially most successful group among the Académie Royale’s ‘talents particuliers,’ its practitioners of lesser genres. Regardless of their ever-increasing presence in the Salon exhibitions, however, they remained barred from teaching, and stood little chance of admission even into the lowest rank of the administration. Absorbing a large number of artists beyond the ‘partie enseignante’ of its history painters and sculptors, who were still considered ‘comme constituant principalement l’Académie’ as late as in 1790, meant that many of its most successful artists were of the Académie rather than in it. Being foreign or female were further disadvantages that could only widen the gap between public acclaim and academic status. What did it mean to be a portrait painter and an academician, and how did portraitists navigate between the rules of the Académie and those of the marketplace ?

PD Dr. Gerrit Walczak is Visiting Professor at the Universität Greifswald and Associate Professor at the Technische Universität Berlin. He previously taught at the universities of Cologne, Mainz and Bochum, and is currently finishing a study on the (e)migration of French artists during the Revolution, Artistische Wanderer: Künstler(e)migration in Zeiten der Revolution und des Krieges, 1789–1814.

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