Home -> Articles -> 2013 -> 2013 Jan-Mar -> 0069 Rachel Esner, In the Artist's Studio with L'Illustration
 

0069 Rachel Esner, In the Artist's Studio with L'Illustration

— filed under:
Rachel Esner, In the Artist's Studio with L'Illustration, RIHA Journal 0069

RIHA Journal 0069 | 18 March 2013

In the Artist's Studio with L'Illustration

Rachel Esner

Editing and peer review managed by:

Lena Bader, Deutsches Forum für Kunstgeschichte – Centre allemand d'histoire de l'art, Paris

Reviewers:

Tobias Kämpf, Pamela J. Warner

Abstract

This article explores the two series of visits to the artist's studio that appeared in the famed French illustrated magazine L'Illustration in the 1850s and in 1886. An in-depth examination of both the texts and images reveals the verbal and visual tropes used to characterize the artists and their spaces, linking these to broader notions of "the artist" – his moral characteristics, behaviors, and artistic practice – as well as to the politics of the art world and the (bourgeois) ideology of L'Illustration. The aim is to uncover not only the language but also the mechanics of the "mediatization" of the image of the artist in this crucial period.

Contents


Introduction

  1. The nineteenth century can be said to have witnessed perhaps not the birth, but certainly the intensification of the cult of personality. The adulation of artists, writers, statesmen, scientists and military men may have been nothing new, but the means by which these celebrities were brought to communal attention certainly were: newspapers, journals and the illustrated press not only contributed significantly to the widespread dissemination of facts regarding well-known personalities, but also formed their image in the public eye. A figure of fascination since the appearance of Vasari's Vite in 1550, during the course of the nineteenth century, interest in the artist grew to previously unknown proportions. In the aftermath of Romanticism, art was no longer only understood as the imitation of nature or the product of rules handed down through institutions such as the Academy, but also as a form of expression, of both the artist's emotions and his personality. As a result, the artist soon came to be understood as the key to his own work.1 As Sainte-Beuve wrote:

La littérature, la production littéraire, n'est point pour moi distincte ou du moins séparable du reste de l'homme et de l'organisation; je puis goûter une œuvre, mais il m'est difficile de la juger indépendamment de la connaissance de l'homme même; et je dirais volontiers: tel arbre, tel fruit. L'étude littéraire me mène ainsi tout naturellement à l'étude morale.2

  1. This attitude was reflected not only in the large number of biographies, memoires and reminiscences of painters of the (recent) past published in this period, but also in the appearance of the artist as the object of ridicule (in the form of caricatures) and the subject of fiction.3 Another manifestation of the curiosity regarding the "man behind the picture" was a growing interest in the artist's place of work, his studio.4 In line with the then-current theories of Hippolyte Taine (among others) regarding the relationship between character and milieu, it was widely believed that the best way to get to know the man was by getting to know his surroundings.5

  2. At the same time, changes in their social and economic status meant that artists themselves increasingly needed to seek the limelight. Dwindling official patronage combined with a growing number of practitioners – a result of the rising wealth of the middle classes, who demanded art to decorate their homes – led to more competition. The artist, once a royal protégé, was now forced to take on the role of "exhibition artist"6 and to sell his works on the open market: at the annual Salon or, later in the century, through galleries. The need to stand out from the crowd was enormous, and the cultivation of a public persona (together with a highly personal artistic style) was one means of attracting attention – as the Realist painter Gustave Courbet early realized and exploited to the fullest.7 The artist was thus as interested in the world at large as it was in him. All this, combined with the burgeoning popular media in the second half of the nineteenth century, resulted in a spate of articles on visits to the artist's studio, among them in the prestigious and widely read French publication, L'Illustration.8

  3. These visits took place in two vastly different but equally crucial periods – in the French art world and beyond: the early Second Empire, with its efforts to achieve unity on both the political and artistic fronts; and the period of the consolidation of the Third Republic, when the first avant-garde generation had become established and the state was once again striving to put an "official" stamp on the arts.9 The first "series"10 was written between 1850 and 1857 by the author and literary critic Augustin-Joseph du Pays (1804-1879); the second by Paul Eudel (1837-1911) and published from January to June 1886. Little is known about either author, although Eudel also made a name for himself as the chronicler of the aution house Hôtel Drouot and journalist for La Vie moderne and Journal des arts, as well as for L'Illustration.

  4. Although much had changed in France in the intervening years, L'Illustration,11 which was founded in 1843 as the French counterpart to the London Illustrated News, had remained largely the same. From the outset its aim had been to inform its readers in depth about current affairs, policymaking and legislation, as well as culture. Its politics were always middle of the road; its tone always elevated and its language always sensible. Although there was less reporting on the arts than on fiscal or political issues, art matters were taken seriously and the journal counted Théophile Gautier and Paul Mantz among its regular critics.12 As elsewhere, here, too, the editors strove for balance and moderation, favoring mainstream, more or less academic artists and those with "official" status.13 Widely read but also fairly expensive, L'Illustration was designed to appeal to a wealthy bourgeois audience, that segment of society which above all desired stability14 and to see itself and its ideals reflected in the things of the world. The journal's print-run was never enormous but remained consistent over the decades, indicating that it had a loyal subscriber base.15 This meant that the editors were obliged to cater to particular interests when choosing both their subjects and their approach. Such mutual dependence was not unique in this period (nor is it today), but may in part explain the remarkable consistencies we find between the series of Du Pays and Eudel in the discussion of the artist and his studio, despite the upheavals that had taken place in French society and art between 1850 and 1886.

  5. The following essay will look closely at both series and their illustrations with the aim of unraveling the image they create of the artist and his place of work. Textual and visual analysis reveals some interesting, even surprising, similarities between the two sets of articles. As we will see, despite the turmoil experienced in the years since the heyday of the Second Empire, many of the same tropes and signs are employed by Eudel when writing about his clutch of artists as were used by Du Pays, tropes and signs that are given visual form in the accompanying plates.16 Bringing these to light is important not only for what it tells us about how L'Illustration viewed the artist, and how this might have been determined by the journal's ideology and audience, but also for what it can reveal about the mechanics of the "mediatization" of the artist in general. That is: how both the artist and his supposedly private creative realm increasingly became shared property – how, in other words, art and the artist, creativity and personality (which were viewed as indelibly linked) were understood by the public during the second half of the nineteenth century. This is a rather different approach than that taken in the scholarly literature on the artist's studio so far, which has tended to focus on artists' own conception and presentation of themselves and their working spaces.17 Here we are dealing with representations in word and image by outsiders, those whose interest in the artist, his studio and his personality may be quite different from the artist's own, and whose representations therefore have a different tenor and aim than those of the artists themselves – although, equally, the various players' interests and images may also overlap.

<top>

The artists

  1. Beginning in 1850, at irregular intervals over the next seven years, the literary critic Augustin-Joseph du Pays visited the studios of the sculptor Antoine-Laurent Dantan (Dantan ainé) (fig. 1); the genre- and portrait painter Pierre-François-Eugène Giraud (fig. 2), famous for his depictions of Spain and Morocco; Paul Delaroche (fig. 3); the history and genre painter Pierre-Jules Jollivet (fig. 4), also renowned for his Spanish genre subjects; the Swiss landscape painter Alexandre Calame (fig. 5); Rosa Bonheur (fig. 6); Eugène Delacroix (fig. 7); the "fantasy"18 painter Narcisse Diaz de la Peña – generally referred to as Narcisse Diaz (fig. 8); and the caricaturist-sculptor Jean-Pierre Dantan (Dantan jeune) (fig. 9).19 The heterogeneity here is striking. Both the linear and painterly traditions of French art are represented; the former Romantic rebel Delacroix is on the list, but so is the Ingriste Delaroche; there is a landscapist and an animal painter, although no representative of history painting in the grand manner. Genre painters enamored of the "exotic" (including Delacroix) seem to dominate. The two sculptors, with whom the critic begins and ends his series, stand for the two extreme ends of sculpture, one being a kind of classicist, dealing with elevated subjects, the other making topical and satirical portraits of his contemporaries. In fact, this eclecticism is programmatic and sets the articles firmly within the declared artistic ideology of the Second Empire.20

The Studio of Dantan ainé. Engraving from: L'Illustration, 11 May 1850, 293, The Hague, Koninklijke Bibliotheek, T 1788

The Studio of Eugène Giraud. Engraving from: L'Illustration, 6 July 1850, 29, The Hague, Koninklijke Bibliotheek, T 1788

The Studio of Paul Delaroche. Engraving from: L'Illustration, 14 September 1850, 165, The Hague, Koninklijke Bibliotheek, T 1788

The Studio of Pierre-Jules Jollivet. Engraving from: L'Illustration, 8 and 15 November 1850, 301, The Hague, Koninklijke Bibliotheek, T 1788

The Studio of Alexandre Calame. Engraving from: L'Illustration, 17 and 24 January 1851, 44, The Hague, Koninklijke Bibliotheek, T 1788

The Studio of Rosa Bonheur. Engraving from: L'Illustration, 1 May 1852, 284, The Hague, Koninklijke Bibliotheek, T 1788

The Studio of Eugène Delacroix. Engraving from: L'Illustration, 25 September 1852, 205, The Hague, Koninklijke Bibliotheek, T 1788

The Studio of Narcisse Diaz. Engraving from: L'Illustration, 19 March 1853, 185, The Hague, Koninklijke Bibliotheek, T 1788

The Studio of Dantan jeune. Engraving from: L'Illustration, 30 May 1857, 348, The Hague, Koninklijke Bibliotheek, T 1788

  1. Paul Eudel's series appeared between March and July of 1886 – the period of the Salon – and treats the painters Philippe Rousseau (fig. 10), Camille Bernier (fig. 11), Gérôme (fig. 12), Bouguereau (fig. 13), Detaille (fig. 14), Benjamin Constant (fig. 15), and Carolus-Duran (fig. 16).21 This can be considered a real series, different from the previous group of visits in that the articles appeared regularly. If we look at the artists Eudel chooses to treat, we see immediately that they represent the "official" art of the Third Republic – as if the author's interest is not only geared to but also steered by mainstream taste. These men are the "cream of the crop" of officialdom, almost all having been given formal recognition in the form of a Légion d'honneur – a fact Eudel is always careful to mention (even if occasionally a little mockingly, as in the case of Bouguereau22). They are fashionable portraitists of government and social celebrities (Constant, Carolus-Duran); decorators of official buildings (Constant); painters of pillar Republican institutions such as the military (Detaille); popular artists whose works command high prices (Gérôme) and/or were frequently bought by the State (Bouguereau); and who work in genres that appeal to both a broad public (Bernier, who painted Breton subjects, or Rousseau) and could be said to underwrite the political ideologies of the Third Republic (Detaille, but also Gérôme and Constant with their colonialist themes). In this sense, although diverse in their subject matter, they are a fairly homogeneous group, and could almost be seen as a kind of phalanx against the avant-garde tendencies of the period. The stylistic eclecticism found in the Du Pays series has been replaced by a uniformity that is as typical of the Third Republic and its striving for stability – in the art world and elsewhere – as the heterogeneity of the Second Empire had been. In this sense, both sets of articles represent and disseminate a similar ideology: the ideology of L'Illustration, which was simultaneously the ideology of those in power.23

10 The Studio of Philippe Rousseau. Engraving from: L'Illustration, 6 March 1886, 161, The Hague, Koninklijke Bibliotheek, T 1788

11 The Studio of Camille Bernier. Engraving from: L'Illustration, 20 March 1886, 184, The Hague, Koninklijke Bibliotheek, T 1788

12 The Studio of Jean-Léon Gérôme. Engraving from: L'Illustration, 17 April 2886, 257, The Hague, Koninklijke Bibliotheek, T 1788

13 The Studio of William Bouguereau. Engraving from: L'Illustration, 24 April 1886, 265, The Hague, Koninklijke Bibliotheek, T 1788

14 The Studio of Edouard Detaille. Engraving from: L'Illustration, 22 May 1886, 269, The Hague, Koninklijke Bibliotheek, T 1788

15 The Studio of Benjamin Constant. Engraving from: L'Illustration, 12 June 1886, 424, The Hague, Koninklijke Bibliotheek, T 1788

16 The Studio of Carolus-Duran. Engraving from: L'Illustration, 3 July 1886, 12, The Hague, Koninklijke Bibliotheek, T 1788

  1. Unfortunately neither author makes any kind of statement regarding his exact intentions in undertaking these visits. Although hardly programmatic, in the first article in his series, Du Pays does, however, state that his aim is to both "entertain" and "inform" his readers,24 giving them a glimpse not only of the artist and his works, but also, more importantly, of the studio an sich. This is his object of interest, although not merely in and of itself: equally important for Du Pays is to show his readers how this space reflects the personality of the artist in residence, each object being given a special significance thanks to its presence in the artist's working environment. Such visits, he writes,

présentent un triple intérêt: outre la connaissance de l'artiste lui-même, et après l'examen de ses ouvrages, des ses ébauches, des ses études, on aime encore à fouiller de regard l'intérieur, toujours plus ou moins étrange, de la retraite qu'il s'est choisie, et dans l'arrangement de laquelle se reflètent son individualité et ses goûts capricieux.25

  1. Although nowhere so explicitly stated, it seems safe to assume that Eudel's aim was a similar one.

<top>

Rite de passage

  1. Although Du Pays claims that "[l]es visites aux ateliers des artistes sont une des plus agréables distractions offertes aux loisirs curieux d'une grande ville,"26 in fact gaining access to the artist's studio is not without its wonderments, even perils. One of the most interesting of the tropes shared by the two series revolves around the means by which the critics manage to enter the artist's private domain. Several of the essays (on Dantan ainé, Giraud, Bonheur, Rousseau, Carolus-Duran27) begin by describing the artists' various neighborhoods, characterizing them throughout as sheltered from the hustle and bustle of the capital, emphasizing that the places where artists choose to live are somehow different from those where ordinary citizens abide, and therefore distinct from the everyday world. Having found the right address, often with some difficulty, the writers then need to pass through a transitional space (a shady garden or forecourt) before being admitted to artist's quarters. This rite de passage always seems to encompass a moment of revelation, which reverses the critic's expectations and returns him, slightly shocked, to the present.

  2. The studio of Dantan ainé, for example, is found in a quiet and elegant quarter near Étoile, close to the former Folie Beaujon.28 Giraud's studio is located at the end of a street, surrounded by a high wall covered in affiches and overhung by trees,29 while Rosa Bonheur's is situated in a part of rue de l'Ouest, near the Jardin du Luxembourg, which Du Pays describes as cut off from the world.30 Like Du Pays, Eudel emphasizes the quietness and sense of time having stood still wherever artists choose to locate their studios. Rousseau, for example, works in Avenue Frochot, where, Eudel writes, despite the many changes the area has now undergone, one still half expects to encounter a rapin with wild hair, dressed in checked trousers and a scarlet waistcoat or a dandy of the old school.31 Carolus-Duran lives and works in the passage Stanislas, not too far from Port Royal, which leads Eudel to characterize the neighborhood as pseudo-monastic.32

  3. The sense of other-worldliness, of entering a special, perhaps even sacred domain, is underlined by the descriptions the authors give of making their way to the studio itself. In the case of Giraud, a gate opens mysteriously, giving Du Pays access to a shady garden that he refers to as the retreat of "un philosophe, ami de la solitude."33 This impression is enhanced as he enters the building, where he is promptly transported back to the sixteenth century, to a space he describes as belonging to a "pieux cenobite." Still entirely alone, he pushes open an iron-clad door, expecting to find a chapel, but encounters instead a room resembling the chamber of a sorcerer and filled with pipe smoke. The author is immediately returned to the moment as he realizes this is the studio itself (fig. 2):

Le retraite où nous sommes introduit n'est donc ni un oratoire ni un repaire de sorcellerie, c'est un atelier, c'est la démure d'un artiste et c'est sa fantaisie, son gout d'antiquaire qui a créé […] cette représentation si exacte d'une chambre et d'un ameublement du seizième siècle qui nous illusionnait tout à l'heure.34

  1. Similarly, having found his way to the artists' secluded workplace, Eudel is then several times left to his own devices, and it is with both curiosity and trepidation that he searches out the studio on arrival. Bouguereau, for example, is not at home, but he is a generous artist and surely will not mind if the author takes a look around;35 Gérôme, on the other hand, is so absorbed in his work that he forgets he has a visitor, forcing the author to – as he puts it: "boldly" 36 – find his way to the studio on his own. The trope of liminality and time travel is most obvious in the visit to Carolus-Duran: here Eudel is required to actually lift a curtain in order to enter the studio, thus coming face to face with the artist, who – with his black velvet coat, flowing cravat, and perfectly coiffed long hair and beard – recalls "le type brillant du peintre tel qu'on rencontrait jadis."37

  2. In the first instance, then, the artist's studio is presented as a locale full of mystery and surprise, a sacred space, separated from the real world and belonging to both the past and the present simultaneously; to enter it requires an almost ritualistic action, and of course this access is not, in the end, available to everyone. Instead, it must be viewed as a privilege, attained only with particular courage. Visiting the artist's studio is often also a journey through time: the artist does not live in "our" world; where he resides and works stands outside time and geography. This of course serves to give the artist a separate and special status, but one that, as we will see, the rest of the text is sometimes at pains to contradict.

<top>

The artist as laborer

  1. The studios Du Pays and Eudel describe can be divided into two types: a kind of "salon studio"38 and the simple atelier de travail. In line with the belief in the relationship between milieu and character, the artist and the type of work he produces are presented in various ways as reflections of these general categories. The verbal impression created of the artist, his space and his oeuvre is then reinforced by the illustrations. Interestingly, the spaces described are almost equally divided between the two sorts, so that – on the surface at least – no one type of artist or studio is privileged over the other.

  2. The working studios Du Pays visits belong to Delaroche, Calame, Bonheur, and Delacroix; those Eudel calls on to Rousseau, Gérôme, Bouguereau and Detaille. Shared qualities in both the descriptions and illustrations allow the reader to discern the features not only of the working studio itself, but also to define quite precisely the type of artist who inhabits it and his (or her) moral characteristics, as well as the kind of art they make. The character of these studios is often somewhat surprising to the author, a rhetorical device that serves to reinforce the particular image he wishes to convey – in most cases serving to underline the artists' lack of pretention and hard-working and dedicated natures.

  3. The working studio is characterized first and foremost by its physical sobriety and even brutal functionalism. Delaroche's working space (fig. 3), for example, is "puritain,"39 while Delacroix's – for Du Pays rather unexpectedly, given the painter's reputation – is a "simple atelier de travail" (fig. 7):

L'atelier en lui-même, hâtons-nous de le dire, est un simple atelier de travail. Si l'imagination, prenant les devants, y a rêvé tout un monde de riches dépouilles, de costumes, d'armures, de curiosités de tout genre empruntées à l'Orient et au moyen âge, elle en est pour ses frais.40

  1. To judge by the illustrations, Calame's studio (fig. 5) is extremely Spartan, and appears to have both a professional and a familial function, while Bonheur's workspace is simply an extension of her stable (fig. 6). Given the exoticism of Gérôme's living quarters (and his subject matter), Eudel is astonished to find that his studio is "un atelier fort simple, un veritable atelier de travail," with little decoration save some Japanese armor (fig. 12).41 At Detaille's, too, the decorative and even feminine qualities of the domestic space only serve to point up that the studio itself (fig. 14) is dedicated purely to work and masculine pursuits, filled to the brim with military paraphernalia, uniforms, and weapons, as well as all the things the artist needs for his art – sketches tucked away in a cabinet, portfolios, easels, bits of uniforms, etc.42 Given the sumptuousness of his art, at Bouguereau's (fig. 13) Eudel is initially slightly taken aback by the artist's working space: to his apparent amazement it contains no decorative objects, no Gothic furniture or arms and armor:

Ce n'est nullement un magasin de bric-à-brac comme dans certains ateliers somptueux où l'ont peut y faire tout, excepté la peinture. Ici, au contraire, on doit bûcher ferme. Les yeux n'ont rien pour les distraire. Sans s'égarer, ils peuvent rester fixes sur le modèle ou sur la toile.43

  1. Despite the "Bohemian" reputation of his neighborhood, nothing could be more sober than Rousseau's studio, and no one could be more sober than the artist himself, who is so modest that he even opens his own door. Dressed in a battered felt cap and a vest covered with splatters of paint, the artist is "la simplicité même. Type sympathique d'une génération de peintres qui s'en va." Correspondingly, his studio is neither a boudoir, nor a salon, nor a cabinet of curiosities: "Il est fait pour le travail est rien de plus" (fig. 10).44

  2. Both authors thus stress, and the illustrations underline, that these studios have none of the luxury or exoticism one might expect, given the louche reputation of artists in general: a large crack even bisects Delaroche's ceiling (fig. 3) and everywhere the floors are bare or only sparsely covered. These spaces demonstratively contain only that which is strictly necessary for art-making: canvases and brushes, paint-boxes, maulsticks, sketchbooks and portfolios, casts, ladders and so on: "Ici rien n'est donné à la libre fantaisie; c'est le domaine de l'art cherché, étudié, et non de l'art improvisé," Du Pays writes of Delaroche's studio.45 Bouguereau's studio may be a "débande incroyable," but everything it contains bears witness to "une préoccupation constant de produire beaucoup et vite."46 Nothing is superfluous to the task at hand and the objects that surround the artist all stand in close relationship to his work. Significantly, as the illustrations show, the walls are hung only with the artists' own sketches and studies; in most cases they are also unframed, and in general there is a notable absence of finished pictures on display: work here is demonstratively in progress.

  3. This image of the hard-working artist is reinforced by the illustrations, where each of the painters – with the exception of Gérôme (fig. 12)47 – is shown at the easel. We see Bonheur deeply absorbed in her work, presumably making a sketch for the enormous canvas beside her (fig. 6) – a potent sign of her ambition – while Calame dips his brush in the paint on his palette (fig. 5). Delaroche (fig. 3) is not actually working, but appears to be contemplating his next move; Delacroix has stopped working to converse with a visitor, but the fact that he has his palette in hand and is reaching into a large paint-box (?) indicates that he will not be distracted for long (fig. 7). The illustration accompanying the article on Rousseau shows him gazing into his massive paint-box, palette and brushes in hand, apparently choosing his colors (fig. 10). We see Detaille standing confidently at his easel, apparently about to begin a new study: his back is to the viewer; he grasps a blank canvas and looks at his model, a uniformed man mounted on a (stuffed) horse (fig. 14). Bouguereau, too, stands at his easel, holding his brush and maulstick and intensely eyeing a semi-nude woman before setting the next stroke (fig. 13).48 In all cases, the artist is totally absorbed, caring little for anything beyond the task at hand and the four walls that enclose him and his art.

  4. This brings us to the relationship between the artist, his or her studio, and the outside world. Both the texts and illustrations suggest that these painters are thoroughly disinterested in their surroundings; if a link to the world beyond the sphere of work is suggested, it is of a very specific kind, one that frames this world in such a way that it does not detract from, but rather reinforces, the image of the working-studio artist as devoted solely to his or her métier. The studio may contain no comforts, but there is a strong emphasis, both verbally and visually, on family and companionship. Calame's studio can be characterized as a mixed working and domestic space; we see his wife reading on a sofa, while his three children are shown at quiet play in the foreground (fig. 5). Everything breathes sobriety and concentration – an atmosphere one is tempted to describe as Calvinist, given Calame's own deeply rooted religious beliefs, which are, of course, duly noted by Du Pays.49 Delaroche's only "luxury" is a piano that belonged to his now-deceased wife, which, Du Pays writes, he keeps in the studio as a means of preserving her memory.50 Perhaps surprisingly, Bonheur is shown together with her lover Micas, who is referred to in the text as her "devoted companion" (fig. 6).51 There is no suggestion, however, that these other commitments do anything but support the artist in his or her dedication to art; they are not a distraction, but rather provide a kind of stability that reflects well on the painters' moral character and also allows them to carry out their work. As far as true outsiders are concerned, they, too, have little effect on the painters. Calame's studio, for example, is described as often full of callers, whom, however, the painter always entertains while continuing to work.52 Furthermore, the studio we actually see is quiet, undisturbed by outsiders (fig. 5). Both Rousseau and Gérôme are also more than capable of carrying on their tasks, smoking their pipes, while chatting to their guests.53 Delacroix also receives visitors; they have clearly come not for a social experience, however, but out of genuine admiration and interest in the painter's work: they are shown looking at the pictures on the walls and easels (fig. 7) – in other words, they are not idlers but have come to appreciate and learn.

  5. That artistic labor alone is the focus of these studios is further underlined in the biographical sections of the texts, where the authors are at pains to stress the struggles these artists have had to overcome – Delaroche with his critics;54 Rosa Bonheur with her sex;55 Calame with his poverty;56 and Delacroix with his new vision57 – in order to get where they are now, and how hard-working they have remained. Rousseau began life poor and fought to succeed, taking as his role model the eighteenth-century painter Chardin – another upright, bourgeois artist and a simple man. Now, even though old and ill, he is still hard at work, going every day from his house on rue Breda to the studio, where he shuts himself in to work at what Eudel describes as a fever pitch, as if he were still a young man; he is "un bûcheur infatigable."58 Eudel attributes Bouguereau's success more to his stubbornness and perseverance than to inspiration. He is conscientious and, above all, immune to criticism, a man who insists on pursuing his own path.59 Detaille's achievement, too, is the result of hard work, and Eudel notes that he has been a passionate draftsman since the age of six.60

  6. The artist with a working studio is thus characterized as a man (or woman) devoted to his art, who labors incessantly and without distraction, wholly uninterested in worldly matters. The combination of his sober character and the severity of the space – each a reflection of the other – where he is surrounded only by his work instruments and sketches results, finally, in a kind of art that is also meant to be taken seriously and is made with a higher goal in mind than mere commercial success. The authors' admiration for the work of these painters is as evident as their admiration for their moderate lifestyles. Despite their heterogeneous styles and subject matter, what all these artists have in common is a serious approach to their métier and an ambition to make art that is more than just popular and saleable. Delaroche, Detaille, and even to some extent Bouguereau and Gérôme, have a didactic aim that places them in the tradition (if not always the scale) of the grandes machines of Neo-Classicism, and the same may be said for the sheer size of Bonheur's canvases. Calame and Rousseau may practice the lesser genres of landscape and still life, but it is clear that Du Pays and Eudel regard them as pioneers in these fields, and for this reason alone different from their myriad followers who fill the Salons with decorative works at affordable prices. Delacroix is a bit of an outsider here, as his works are anything but temperate, but Du Pays is definitely at pains to emphasize that for all his "revolutionary" epithets, Delacroix is also a hard worker and painter of great stature.

<top>

The artist as man of the world

  1. The characterization of the salon studio, its artists and the art produced there could not be more at odds with this picture. Du Pays' articles on Dantan ainé, Giraud, Jollivet, Diaz, and Dantan jeune, and Eudel's on Bernier, Constant and Carolus-Duran trace a different kind of space and construct a very different kind of artist. If the main characteristic of the working studio is its sobriety and the main emphasis labor and the work of art, in the salon studio it is abundance and a focus on the world outside that set the tone. Much attention is paid in the articles on Giraud and Dantan jeune61 to the Henri-IV-style furnishings, the bahuts so beloved of the Bohemians of 1830, the heavy carpets and curtains, the suits of armor, stuffed animals, and myriad bibelots – many purchased on their foreign travels – with which these artists surround themselves and to which the reader is treated in the engravings. Camille Bernier's studio (fig. 11),62 located in a hôtel near Quai d'Orsay, is described as a "véritable muséum" in neo-Renaissance style, filled with innumerable objets d'art and books. Eudel describes the Orientalist Benjamin Constant's atelier (fig. 15) as one might a – rather messy – harem, with exotic items and bits of clothing decoratively strewn about, even draped over the easel: "L'atelier de l'impasse Hélène ce n'est plus Paris, c'est l'Orient avec son art raffiné et somptueux, son exubérance, son intensité, son éclat, ses ors, son faste, sa splendeur, sa magnificence."63 And he uses more or less the same language to give an impression of the studio of Carolus-Duran.64 The artists' accouterments are never mentioned and few beyond the obligatory palette and brush or sculptor's trestle are shown in the engravings. The pictures on the walls are not studies but finished works, many elaborately framed – whether these are by the artist himself, his friends or his predecessors is often unclear. At Bernier's, Eudel puts a good deal of emphasis on these pictures, noting that many were made by members of the Barbizon School; this gives the reader an impression not only of Bernier's painterly genealogy, but also the idea that he moves in (now) well-established artistic circles.65 All these paintings are demonstratively on display and not part of a working process. Were the works in progress in the working studio generally hidden from the viewer (with the exception of Delaroche and Bouguereau), here they are clearly spread out for us to admire (figs. 4, 8, 9, 11, 15). This is the studio as spectacle, a notion underlined in the engravings of Giraud's and Jollivet's (figs. 2, 4) by the tucked-up curtain at the right, which reveals the room as if it were a stage set.

  2. That the artist inhabiting the salon studio is a completely different creature from the one who occupies a working studio is evidenced by the way in which the authors describe, and the engravings illustrate, these artists' relationship to artistic labor and the world at large. Although the discussion of the studio of Dantan ainé (fig. 1) begins with his working studio, Du Pays is quick to emphasize that in today's art world no self-respecting sculptor would think of wielding the mallet himself: nowadays he is a man of the world, for whom it would be unacceptable to have "les mains calleuses d'un marbrier."66 Thanks to his myriad assistants and apprentices, the modern sculptor can focus solely on conceiving his works, which, Du Pays implies, is the proper job of a sculptor anyway: he should be a thinker rather than a doer.67 Perhaps not surprisingly, his younger brother, Dantan jeune, is described as similarly mondain. As Du Pays writes, the term atelier is not even appropriate to the place where he is received, which is actually an elegant cabinet in Dantan's apartment.68 Instead of a studio or workshop, the visitor is conducted into a large gallery, where the sculptor's works are shown together with his collectibles, gathered from places as far away as Egypt and Algeria, making the whole reminiscent of a cabinet of curiosities (fig. 9). Du Pays likens the space to an alchemist's study69 and creates the impression of the sculptor as a kind of adventurer.

  3. Turning to the painters, we find that they, too, are characterized as similarly urbane and disinterested in work. Like the Dantan brothers, Giraud is clearly a man of today's world, surrounded as he is by countless curiositiés and with an aura of the brasserie about him as he amiably approaches his visitor through a cloud of smoke, leaving his easel although still with palette and brushes in hand70 – thereby exhibiting a willingness to be distracted by the potential of sociability. Eudel visits Bernier for one of the artist's weekly and highly convivial lunches – this time to celebrate the completion of his latest work for the Salon;71 and Carolus-Duran on a Thursday, for his well-attended "at-home day," when visitors from Paris and abroad flock to the studio to see the artist's pictures.72 He describes the atmosphere as gay and cosmopolitan; the artist is at ease and goes about making amusing remarks to his guests: "Ici l'on cause et l'on jouit de la vie le plus agréablement possible en abrégeant les heures au moyen d'intelligentes discussions d'où les banalités sont proscrites."73 For the occasion, the painter has arranged his canvases on easels facing a large window (so that they are bathed in the best possible light), and now and again he dramatically pulls away their covering cloths to reveal them to his admirers – a telling image of the artist as impresario-magician and the studio as spectacle. All traces of labor have been erased and only the saleable, finished product remains. This notion is further supported by the illustration (fig. 16), which shows the artist playing a miniature organ (part of the studio decor), with no indication whatsoever of his activity as a painter.

  4. The iconography of the illustrations affirms and underlines the sociable, outward-looking, highly commercialized nature of these studios, and the notion of the artist as a kind of sorcerer who need not actually work in order to produce. At Dantan ainé's (fig. 1) we see not the workshop, but rather a space that is not quite a salon but is nonetheless filled with what Du Pays describes as souvenirs from Dantan's travels, pictures given to him by his friends, and many little statuettes by his own hand and those of his fellow sculptors.74 We see him seated at a small trestle with a bozzetto – that is: a sketch or conception, and not a piece that would require hard physical labor. Since he holds some kind of tool he has clearly been working, but we see him distracted by a lady-visitor or servant. The actual instruments of his trade are not entirely hidden from view (we see the workshop through a door at the right), but they are nonetheless secondary to this image of the sculptor as a relaxed man with plenty of time and money. Dantan jeune, too, appears among his treasures, standing before a trestle table holding a (finished?) bust, with a stool and a portfolio nearby (fig. 9). The artist is shown demonstratively with his hands in his pockets, indicating that he has no need of them. Instead, a large number of sculptures are arrayed for our viewing (and potentially purchasing) pleasure – the artist is thus productive, even if he does not actually work.

  5. Like Dantan ainé (fig. 1), Jollivet (fig. 4) is depicted being interrupted by an outsider, who approaches him as he stands on his ladder in front of an enormous canvas. The woman in the chair may be a model, but is in any case not absorbed in her own work (like Calame's wife, fig. 5); instead, she too directs her attention to the painter. Diaz's studio (fig. 8) is positively crowded: we see not only the model for the apparently just-finished picture on the easel, but what is clearly a group of the artist's friends who have come to admire it; the painter stands back while they gesture animatedly, beckoning us, too, to compare the work displayed on the easel with the living model; the viewer is thus drawn into the spectacle as well. Giraud (fig. 2) is shown seated at the easel, his brush touching the canvas, but the "work" he is carrying out seems to be nothing more than putting the finishing touches on an already completed and framed portrait. As a further indication of the social character of the studio, he is watched over by a serious looking bearded man (perhaps the man portrayed, in any case a patron or friend), while a young boy leafs through his drawings on the floor; another gentleman lounges on the sofa under the window. The most prominent object in the illustration accompanying the article on Bernier is the work destined for the coming Salon, unframed, on the left (fig. 11). We see an entirely domestic space, with potted palms, bouquets of flowers, books and portfolios, The artist leafs through a portfolio, handing his lunch guest small, apparently finished watercolors that are most likely for sale. That Constant's efforts, too, are directed to the world beyond the studio can be garnered from the illustration: the painter is seated at his easel, palette in hand; his maulstick resting on the frame of a finished canvas, he regards us with a somewhat austere expression (fig. 15).75 Not only his outward gaze but also, more importantly, the fact that the work is clearly finished and visible while the painter himself is idle indicates that here, too, the studio and the painting are pure spectacle.

  6. These are thus "show" studios in several senses of the word, where everything is directed towards the outside world, more like galleries or salons than workspaces.76 In them, sociability rather than work is paramount. The artists inhabiting the salon studio are described not as diligent, but as "men of the world," who seemingly have no need to work in order to be successful, and who are more interested in their possessions than their work accouterments: their studios are full, containing many objets d'art and other treasures, implying time and money for collecting. In these studios and for these artists it is not the family that is important, but rather their network of friends and admirers. The texts and images stress their successes rather than their struggles. Although sometimes shown at their easels, these artists are either being interrupted in their work or are actually socializing, or there is a visitor from outside watching over them. This places an emphasis on the social character of studio, its public side, and on the work of art as a kind of spectacle: both the studio and the work are spread out before our gaze, and the artist welcomes us into his world. The implication is that the artist with this type of studio is a social man, and, by extension, the kind of work he produces is also an art for display and show. All the painters with this kind of studio paint sensual, colorful, flattering or exotic pictures, which have no other purpose than to please the eye of a discerning patron. Once again, studio, man and work are in line with one another. An artist with a working studio could never produce the kind of flippant art that the one with a show studio produces, and vice versa.

<top>

Conclusion

  1. One of the most fascinating elements of L'Illustration's approach to the artist's studio is its consistency over a period of more than 30 years. Despite the extraordinarily different political, social and artistic circumstances under which the two authors paid their visits to some of the most prominent artists of their day, their rhetoric is remarkably similar. In broad terms we can conclude that for the authors of L'Illustration, and therefore for the magazine's bourgeois subscribers, there were two basic types of studio and two basic types of artist, each of which both produced and reflected the other, resulting, almost unerringly, in a certain type of work. We can discern a number of rhetorical contrasts that allow us to build a general picture of L'Illustration's image of art and the artist: solitary vs. social; bourgeois vs. celebrity; didactic vs. commercial. In general, the descriptions seem not to privilege one category above the other. Nonetheless, Du Pays' rigorously condemns Diaz and praises Delaroche, while Eudel clearly admires Rousseau and mocks Bernier and Carolus-Duran.77 For Du Pays, Diaz's art is an art of "mesonges,"78 while Delaroche's is "étudié";79 Rousseau stands in the tradition of Chardin,80 while Bernier is prouder of having saved a Breton woman from drowning81 than of his pictures and Carolus-Duran is clearly more interested in making an impression than in making worthwhile art.82 Already in 1844 Du Pays had expressed regret at Delaroche's withdrawal from the Salon and implied that his absence had made it possible, if not inevitable, that a sensual, romantic art synonymous with spectacle and commercialism had been able to conquer the French art world.83 His admiration for the diligent artist may thus equally be read as a plea for a return to a kind of art that can fulfill a noble purpose. Interesting in terms of the audience for whom Du Pays and Eudel were writing is of course the fact that the "hard-working" artist is a type that their bourgeois readers could identify with: he is upright, industrious, and family-oriented. For such readers, labor was a value in itself – witness their appreciation of the craftsmanship and skill involved in the execution of (for example) one of Delaroche's tightly painted, highly detailed and "historically accurate" canvases, evidenced by the artist's enormous popularity. The more social type, on the other hand, is presented as a kind of celebrity, a man they might either disdain or admire, but who is in any case distant from them; a man to marvel at rather than imitate.

  2. An interesting aspect of L'Illustration's discourse is the apparent desire to demonstrate the normality and moderation of all the artists visited. This comes to the fore in Eudel's articles even more than in those of Du Pays. There seems to be a concerted effort to characterize all the painters as more or less sensible and restrained. Even the rather flamboyant personalities of Constant and Carolus-Duran, reflected in the furnishings of their studios and their behavior, are tempered by the illustrations:84 both of their spaces (figs. 15, 16) appear far more sober than one would have expected from the verbal descriptions. As we have already noted, Rousseau is so modest that he opens the door himself, and the author also makes explicit mention of that fact that he lives a regulated domestic life and comes to the studio every day to work.85 Bernier, of whom Eudel seems otherwise somewhat disapproving, is praised for the moderation of his dress and his overall bongarçonnerie.86 Although the scion of a well-to-do family, he has not let this ruin his talent; and, equally important, unlike some of his contemporaries, he never deliberately lived in poverty for the sake of his art. In other words, he had never been a bohémien – most important for a bourgeois readership, which might still have had some associations of such attitudes with revolutionary politics. Equally, Gérôme and Detaille are both described as being as correct, upstanding and polite as military officers.87 The articles in L'Illustration thus might be said to in some sense contribute to the mystification of the artist, but more importantly, they seem to strive to normalize him – very much in line with the journal's general policy of promoting stability and moderation after decades of upheaval. This form of mediatization may thus be somewhat different from forms like the novel or caricature, which tend to characterize the studio as an exotic locale and the artist as a permanent outsider. Further research into the image of the artist in popular media such as the (illustrated) press, novels and caricatures will be necessary, however, in order to gauge how far the tropes outlined here are universal and in how far the image presented in the pages of L'Illustration is anomalous or representative.

<top>

How to cite this article:
Rachel Esner, "In the Artist's Studio with
L'Illustration," RIHA Journal 0069 (18 March 2013), URN: [please add, see Metadata], URL: http://www.riha-journal.org/articles/2013/2013-jan-mar/esner-lillustration (date of access: [please add]).


1 Philippe Junod, "L'Atelier comme autoportrait," in: Pascal Griener and Peter J. Schneemann, eds., Künstlerbilder – Images de l'artiste. Colloque du Comité International d'Histoire de l'Art, Université de Lausanne, 9-12 juin 1994, Bern et al. 1998, 88.

2 Charles Augustin Sainte-Beuve, "Etude de biographie morale," in: Revue Contemporaine (1869), 597.

3 On the artist-novel see, among others, Natalie Heinich, "Artistes dans la fiction: quatre générations," in: Griener and Schneemann, Künstlerbilder – Images de l´artiste, 205-220; Joy Newton, "The Atelier Novel. Painters as Fictions," in: Richard Hobbs, ed., Impressions of French Modernity. Art and Literature in France, 1850-1900, Manchester and New York 1998, 173-189; Philippe Hamon, "Le Topos de l'atelier," in: René Démoris, ed., L'Artiste en représentation – Actes du colloque Paris III. Boulogne, Paris 1993, 125-144. On the caricatures see in particular Annette Wohlgemuth, Honoré Daumier: Kunst im Spiegel der Karikatur von 1830 bis 1870, Frankfurt a. M. et al. 1996.

4 The artist's studio in the nineteenth and twentieth centuries has been the subject of a large number of scholarly studies, symposia, and exhibitions in recent years. Key publications include Michael Diers and Monika Wagner, eds., Topos Atelier. Werkstatt und Wissensform, Berlin 2010; Wouter Davidts and Kim Paice, eds., The Fall of the Studio. Artists at Work, Amsterdam 2009; Mariëtte Haveman et al., eds., Ateliergeheimen. Over de werkplaats van de kunstenaar vanaf 1200 tot heden, Amsterdam and Zutphen 2006; Michael Cole and Mary Pardo, Inventions of the Studio, Renaissance to Romanticism, Chapel Hill and London 2005; Eva Mongi-Vollmer, Das Atelier des Malers: Die Diskurse eines Raums in der zweiten Hälfte des 19. Jahrhunderts, Berlin 2004; Ingeborg Bauer, Das Atelierbild in der Französischen Malerei 1855-1900, Köln 1999; John Milner, The Studios of Paris. The Capital of Art in the Late Nineteenth Century, New Haven 1988; and Michael Peppiatt and Alice Bellony-Rewald, Imagination's Chamber: Artists and their Studios, London 1983. The author is currently preparing an edited volume on the topic: Rachel Esner, Sandra Kisters and Ann Sophie Lehmann, Hiding Making – Showing Creation. The Studio from Turner to Tacita Dean, Amsterdam 2013. Among recent exhibitions focusing (in part) on the artist's studio we may cite: Sylvain Amic, ed., Bohèmes, de Léonard de Vinci à Picasso, exh. cat., Paris 2012; Ina Conzen, ed., Mythos Atelier. Von Spitzweg bis Picasso, von Giacometti bis Nauman, exh. cat., Stuttgart (Munich) 2012; Alain Bonnet, ed., L'Artiste en représentation. Images des artistes dans l'art du XIXe siècle, exh. cat., La-Roche-sur-Yon (Lyon) 2012; Mayken Jonkman and Eva Geudeker, eds., Mythen van het atelier. Werkplaats en schilderpraktijk van de negentiende-eeuwse Nederlandse kunstenaar, exh. cat., Haarlem (Zwolle) 2010; Giles Waterfield, ed., The Artist's Studio, exh. cat., Compton Verney 2009; and Alexander Sturgis, ed., Rebels and Martyrs. The Image of the Artist in the Nineteenth-Century, exh. cat., London 2006.

5 See, for example, Hippolyte Taine, Philosophie de l'art, Paris 1865; Edmond Duranty, "La Nouvelle Peinture (1876)," reprinted in: Charles S. Moffett et al., The New Painting: Impressionism 1874-1886, exh. cat., San Francisco 1986, 37-47; and Henri Nocq, Tendances nouvelles: Enquête sur l'évolution des industries d'art, Paris 1896, 11: "En de nombreuses visites aux peintres et aux sculpteurs les plus différents, j'ai eu fréquemment l'occasion de constater qu'il faut, pour avoir une idée à peu près complète d'un artiste, de ses œuvres, de ses tendances, visiter son atelier. Ce n'est pas seulement que les œuvres, dans l'endroit même où elles furent conçues et réalisées, gardent intacte toute leur signification; mais il y a entre un artiste et son atelier une ressemblance frappante; le logis permet de formuler, sur celui qui l'occupe, un jugement assez complet, et de prévoir le genre de réponse promise à l'interwiew [sic]." One could cite dozens of similar statements made throughout the nineteenth century. As with the artist's studio, there is an abundance of literature on the nineteenth-century interior and its representation and meaning in art: Temma Balducci et al., eds., Interior Portraiture and Masculine Identity in France, 1789-1914, Farnham 2011; Frances Borzello, At Home. The Domestic Interior in Art, New York 2006; Charlotte Grant, ed., Imagined Interiors: Representing the Domestic Interior since the Renaissance, London 2006; Pamela Todd, The Impressionists at Home, London 2005; Janet Floyd, ed., Domestic Space. Reading the Nineteenth-Century Interior, Manchester 1999; Sharon Marcus, Apartment Stories. City and Home in Nineteenth-Century Paris and London, Berkeley 1999; Sabine Schulze, ed., Innenleben: Die Kunst des Interieurs: Vermeer Bis Kabakov, Ostfildern-Ruit 1998; and Claudia Becker, Zimmer, Kopf, Welten. Zur Motivgeschichte des Intérieurs im 19. und 20. Jahrhundert, Munich 1990.

6 On the rise of the "exhibition artist" see Oskar Bätschmann, The Artist in the Modern World – A Conflict between Market and Self-Expression, Cologne 1997. The classic study of the changes in the French art world in the nineteenth century remains Harrison C. White and Cynthia A. White, Canvases and Careers: Institutional Change in the French Painting World, Chicago 1993. See also Michael Moriarty, "Structures of Cultural Production in Nineteenth-Century France," in: Peter Collier and Robert Lethbridge, eds., Artistic Relations. Literature and the Visual Arts in 19th Century France, New Haven and London 1994, 15-29.

7 On Courbet see Petra ten Doesschate-Chu, The Most Arrogant Man in France. Gustave Courbet and the Nineteenth-Century Media Culture, Princeton and Oxford 2007 and, more recently, Stephanie Marchal, Gustave Courbet in seinen Selbstdarstellungen, Berlin 2012.

8 See also Rachel Esner, "Visiting Delaroche and Diaz with L'Illustration," in: Nineteenth-Century Art Worldwide 11/2 (2012), http://www.19thc-artworldwide.org/index.php/summer12/rachel-esner-visiting-delaroche-and-diaz-with-lillustration; and idem, "Nos artistes chez eux. L'image des artistes dans la presse illustrée," in: exh. cat., L'artiste en représentation, 139-147.

9 On art and the establishment in the early Third Republic see, among others, Patricia Mainardi, The End of the Salon. Art and the State in the Early Third Republic, Cambridge and New York 1993, and Richard Thomson, The Troubled Republic. Visual Culture and Social Debate in France, 1889-1900, New Haven and London 2004.

10 I use this term advisedly regarding the articles of the 1850s, which appeared incidentally over a period of seven years; the 1886 group is a series in the proper sense.

11 For the history of the journal see David Kunzle, "'L'Illustration'. Journal universel, 1843-1853. Le premier magazine illustré en France. Affirmation du pouvoir de la bourgeoisie," in: Nouvelles de l'estampe 43 (1963), 8-19; Jean-Nöel Marchandiau, L'Illustration (1943-1944). La Vie et la mort d'un journal, Toulouse 1987; Journal universel, L'Illustration. Un siècle de vie française, exh. cat., Paris 1987; and Karine Taveaux-Grandpierre and Michel Durampart, "Un nouveau mode de la presse nouvelliste: L'Illustration," in: Communication & Langages (2008), 21-31.

12 Jean Watelet, La Presse illustrée en France, 1814-1914, 4 vols., Lille 1998, vol. 3, 26.

13 Watelet, La Presse illustrée, vol. 3, 25.

14 Jéan-Nöel Marchandiau has characterized L'Illustration's audience as having a particular antipathy towards all forms of extremism. He describes the readership as staunchly "center left, center, and center right." It was the place for all those high-minded citoyens "fuyant la fébrilité." See Marchandiau, L'Illustration (1943-1944), 298.

15 Marchandiau, L'Illustration (1943-1944), 27 and exh. cat., Journal universel, L'Illustration, preface.

16 It is interesting to note that the visual and rhetorical devices I outline below occur in similar form throughout all the writings on the artist and his studio in the illustrated press in this period; see Esner, "Nos artistes chez eux," passim.

17 My approach is similar in this regard to that taken by Elizabeth Emery in her recent Photojournalism and the Origins of the French Writer House Museum (1881-1914), Farnham 2012 and by Sarah Burns in Inventing the Modern Artist. Art and Culture in Gilded Age America, New Haven 1996.

18 Diaz is of course today mainly known for his landscape paintings of the Forest of Fontainebleau; in the mid-nineteenth century, however, he was widely appreciated for his fashionable fêtes galantes and allegorical subjects, and it is in this capacity that he is discussed by Du Pays.

19 A.-J. Du Pays, "Visite aux ateliers: Dantan ainé," in: L'Illustration, 11 May 1850, 294; A.-J. Du Pays, "Visite aux ateliers: Eugène Giraud," in: L'Illustration, 6 July 1850, 29-30; A.-J. Du Pays, "Visite aux ateliers: Delaroche," in: L'Illustration, 14 September 1850, 164; A.-J. Du Pays, "Visite aux ateliers: Jollivet," in: L'Illustration, 8 and 15 November 1850, 301-302; A.-J. Du Pays, "Visite aux ateliers: Calame," in: L'Illustration, 17 and 24 January 1851, 43-44; A.-J. Du Pays, "Visite aux ateliers: Rosa Bonheur," in: L'Illustration, 1 May 1852, 283-284; A.-J. Du Pays, "Visite aux ateliers: Delacroix," in: L'Illustration, 25 September 1852, 205; A.-J. Du Pays, "Visite aux ateliers: Diaz," in: L'Illustration, 19 March 1853, 185-186; and A.-J. Du Pays, "Atelier de Dantan jeune," in: L'Illustration, 30 May 1857, 347.

20 Patricia Mainardi, Art and Politics of the Second Empire. The Universal Expositions of 1855 and 1867, New Haven and London 1987.

21 Paul Eudel, "Les ateliers de peintres. Philippe Rousseau," in: L'Illustration, 6 March 1886, 151; Paul Eudel, "Les ateliers de peintres. Camille Bernier," in: L'Illustration, 20 March 1886, 183; Paul Eudel, "Les ateliers de peintres. Léon Gérôme," in: L'Illustration, 17 April 1886, 247; Paul Eudel, "Les ateliers de peintres. William Bouguereau," in: L'Illustration, 24 April 1886, 263; Paul Eudel, "Les ateliers de peintres. Edouard Detaille," in: L'Illustration, 22 May 1886, 259; Paul Eudel, "Les ateliers de peintres. Benjamin Constant," in: L'Illustration, 12 June 1886, 411; Paul Eudel, "Les ateliers de peintres. Carolus Duran," in: L'Illustration, 3 July 1886, 3.

22 Eudel, "William Bouguereau," 263.

23 See Kunzle, "L'Illustration," passim.

24 Du Pays, "Dantan ainé," 294.

25 Du Pays, "Dantan jeune," 347.

26 Du Pays, "Dantan jeune," 347.

27 Du Pays, "Dantan ainé," 294; Du Pays, "Eugène Giraud," 29; Du Pays, "Rosa Bonheur," 283; Eudel, "Philippe Rousseau," 151; Eudel, "Carolus Duran," 3.

28 Du Pays, "Dantan ainé," 294.

29 Du Pays, "Eugène Giraud," 29.

30 Du Pays, "Rosa Bonheur," 283.

31 Eudel, "Philippe Rousseau," 151.

32 Eudel, "Carolus Duran," 3.

33 Du Pays, "Eugène Giraud," 29.

34 Du Pays, "Eugène Giraud," 29.

35 Eudel, "William Bouguereau," 263.

36 Eudel, "Léon Gérôme," 247.

37 Eudel, "Carolus Duran," 3.

38 In Du Pays' articles these are not, however, the pure salon or "show" studios we know from later in the century. As he makes no mention of a separate working space, it seems safe to assume that the artists discussed did in fact execute their pictures in the location where he visits them; despite their "salon-like" appearance, then, they are still in some sense places of work. In two cases in the writings of Eudel, however (Bernier and Carolus-Duran), there is mention of a separate "working studio," so that the space he actually describes must indeed be viewed as the classic salon studio we know from Malerfürsten like Franz von Lenbach and Hans Makart.

39 Du Pays, "Delaroche," 164.

40 Du Pays, "Delacroix," 205.

41 Eudel, "Léon Gérôme," 247.

42 Eudel, "Edouard Detaille," 259.

43 Eudel, "William Bouguereau," 263.

44 Eudel, "Philippe Rousseau," 151.

45 Du Pays, "Delaroche," 165.

46 Eudel, "William Bouguereau," 263. This does not, however, mean that the author necessarily approves of the art that is made here. For him, a working studio was not an absolute guarantee of artistic integrity. This is indicated not only by the reference to Bouguereau's tendency to produce "a lot, and fast," but also by his comment, on finding the artist's abandoned painter's smock with his légion d'honneur in the buttonhole: "Ah! Ce veston si modeste, si râpé même, a-t-il dû en voir de ces toiles blanches et grises que l'habile pinceau de son propriétaire convertissait promptement en beaux billets de la Banque de France?"

47 Eudel, "Léon Gérôme," 247. The illustration (257) shows an unpretentious if somewhat untidy space, the artist seated in a low chair, dressed in a simple velvet jacket, trousers and slippers, contemplating his work in progress, which, significantly, is invisible to the viewer. The engraving was made on the basis of a photograph, one of the few plates in L'Illustration for which this is known to be the case: as the painter is so busy, and so much time has been lost in waiting around, after being admitted to the studio Eudel asks the artist to pose for his photograph so that he can take his leave. On the use of photography and photographic processes in L'Illustration see exh. cat., Journal universel, L'Illustration, 24.

48 The canvas he is working on appears to be Le Jour (private collection), usually dated to 1881. This is a strange anomaly: while it may indicate that that picture is of a later date, it could also be an invention of the draughtsman or one of Bouguereau's many copies after his most popular works.

49 Du Pays, "Calame," 43.

50 Du Pays, "Delaroche," 164.

51 Du Pays, "Rosa Bonheur," 284.

52 Du Pays, "Calame," 45.

53 Eudel, "Philippe Rousseau," 151; Eudel, "Léon Gérôme," 247.

54 Du Pays, "Delaroche," 164.

55 Du Pays, "Rosa Bonheur," 283-284.

56 Du Pays, "Calame," 44.

57 Du Pays, "Delacroix," 206-207.

58 Eudel, "Philippe Rousseau," 151.

59 Eudel, "William Bouguereau," 263.

60 Eudel, "Edouard Detaille," 259.

61 Du Pays, "Eugène Giraud," 29-30; Du Pays, "Dantan jeune," 347.

62 Eudel, "Camille Bernier," 183.

63 Eudel, "Benjamin Constant," 411.

64 Eudel, "Carolus-Duran," 3.

65 Eudel, "Camille Bernier," 183.

66 Du Pays, "Dantan ainé," 293.

67 Du Pays ("Dantan ainé," 293) ends the piece with an exhortation to artists in general and sculptors in particular: "– Heureux artistes! Fréquentez les Muses, gravissez le Pinde et l'Hélicon, égarez vos rêveries sur les bords du Permesse, mais ayez du temps à perdre, et pas de mémoires à régler avec votre praticien et votre marbrier!"

68 Du Pays, "Dantan jeune," 347.

69 Du Pays, "Dantan jeune," 348.

70 Du Pays, "Eugène Giraud," 29.

71 Eudel, "Camille Bernier," 183.

72 Eudel, "Carolus Duran," 3.

73 Eudel, "Carolus Duran," 3.

74 Du Pays, "Dantan ainé," 294.

75 Eudel, "Benjamin Constant," 424. Judging by the way the artist regards the viewer, this illustration, too, seems have been engraved after a photograph; the overall severity of the image (as compared with Eudel's verbal description of the studio as a decadent harem) may in fact be due the photographic technology and its reproduction.

76 Eudel mentions that both Bernier and Carolus-Duran have second studios, where their creative work takes place but which are closed to the public. These may indeed be "capharanaüm," and their being kept secret a sign of the artist's modesty (or embarrassment at their messiness), but for Eudel this is false modesty. For him – as for Du Pays (see his article on Delaroche: Du Pays, "Delaroche," 165) – the public has a right to view the artistic process and, despite the light-hearted tone, there is a sense of moral outrage that this has not been made possible. See Eudel, "Camille Bernier," 183 and Eudel, "Carolus Duran," 3.

77 Du Pays, "Diaz," 185-186; Du Pays, "Delaroche," 164-165; Eudel, "Philippe Rousseau," 151; Eudel, Camille Bernier, 183; Eudel, "Carolus Duran," 3.

78 Du Pays, "Diaz," 185.

79 Du Pays, "Delaroche," 165.

80 Eudel, "Philippe Rousseau," 151.

81 Eudel, "Camille Bernier," 183.

82 Eudel, "Carolus Duran," 3.

83 Anonymous, "Salon de 1844. Visite dans les ateliers," in: L'Illustration, March 1844, 3-5. The article is anonymous, but the similarity with the views later expressed by Du Pays regarding both Delaroche and the Salon indicate that this article, too, was probably written by him. See also Du Pays, "Delaroche," 165.

84 Eudel, "Benjamin Constant," 411; Eudel, "Carolus Duran," 3.

85 Eudel, "Philippe Rousseau," 151.

86 Eudel, "Camille Bernier," 183.

87 Eudel, "Léon Gérôme," 247; Eudel, "Edouard Detaille," 259.

License: The text of this article is provided under the terms of the Creative Commons License CC-BY-NC-ND 3.0.

Document Actions