The British School of Sculpture is the first essay collection examining the rich array of sculpture produced and exhibited in Britain between 1768 and 1837. Featuring nearly 60 illustrations, many never reproduced before, and combining essays from leading scholars in the field with exciting new voices, the volume challenges the notion that neoclassicism dominated British art history in the period, and returns to centre stage a number of compelling baroque works. The volume also emphasises the regional specificities of the British School, paying particular attention to the importance of country house collections and Scottish influences, and the British School’s broader cosmopolitanism, revealing how sculptors also engaged with contemporary continental artists, especially in Rome, and ancient classical and Indian antiquities. In addition, the volume combines a novel account of some of the period’s most significant anti-war memorials, emphasises the importance of religion, and reveal’s sculpture’s relation to contemporary prints and literary sources. Featuring an unprecedentedly extensive bibliography, the volume is specifically designed for art historians and cultural historians of the period, as well as for visitors to British churches and country houses, and heritage sites such as St Paul’s Cathedral and Westminster Abbey. Continuer la lecture de Publication : “The British School of Sculpture, c.1760-1832”.
French architects Charles Percier (1764–1838) and Pierre-François-Léonard Fontaine (1762–1853) became the most celebrated decorators of the French Revolution and achieved success as the official architects of Napoleon Bonaparte. This book explores how Percier and Fontaine created the Empire style and a system of decoration that engaged with the difficult politics of the period. Taking seriously the architects’ achievements in interior decoration, furnishings, theater designs, and publications during the early and most active period of their collaborative practice, their integral role in reestablishing the luxury market in Paris after the Terror, cultivating the taste of a new clientele, and creating sites of power through their interior decorations are explored. From meeting rooms designed to resemble military encampments to gilded imperial thrones that replaced Bourbon fleur-de-lys with Napoleonic bees, the architects moved beyond a Neoclassical idiom in order to transform the symbols of monarchy and revolution into an imperial ideology defined by a contradictory aesthetics. At the heart of Percier and Fontaine’s decorative work and central to grasping the politics of the Empire style is a dialectical tension between the search for a monumental architecture of permanence and the reliance upon portable, collapsible, and mobile forms. Percier, Fontaine and the Politics of the Empire Style will contribute new interdisciplinary perspectives on the relationship of the decorative arts and architecture with the political culture of post-revolutionary France and how interior decoration engendered a new awareness of time, memory, and identity.
Iris Moon is a visiting assistant professor in the School of Architecture at Pratt Institute. She specializes in eighteenth and nineteenth-century European art, architecture, and the decorative arts.
The world that shaped Europe’s first national sculptor-celebrities, from Schadow to David d’Angers, from Flaxman to Gibson, from Canova to Thorvaldsen, was the city of Rome. Until around 1800, the Holy See effectively served as Europe’s cultural capital, and Roman sculptors found themselves at the intersection of the Italian marble trade, Grand Tour expenditure, the cult of the classical male nude, and the Enlightenment republic of letters. Two sets of visitors to Rome—the David circle and the British traveler—have tended to dominate Rome’s image as an open artistic hub, while the lively community of sculptors of mixed origins has not been awarded similar attention. Rome, Travel, and the Sculpture Capital, c. 1770–1825 is the first study to piece together the labyrinthine sculptors’ world of Rome between 1770 and 1825. The volume sheds new light on the links connecting Neo-classicism, sculpture collecting, Enlightenment aesthetics, studio culture, and queer studies. The collection offers ideal introductory reading on sculpture and Rome around 1800, and its provocative perspectives will appeal to a readership interested in understanding a modernized Europe’s transnational desire for Neo-classical, Roman sculpture.