Saturday, December 19, 2009

Degas Hated Them, but People Wept Over Them

James Tissot. Quiet. c. 1881.Oil on canvas.
Tissot's illustrated "Life of Christ" (1884-1894)

From Tissot's illustrated "Life of Christ" (1884-1894)
Degas hated them, but R. Crumb might appreciate them. What am I referring to? After spending over a decade as a successful society painter in London, James Tissot returned to Paris in 1882 to paint the fashionable women there, but switched gears and embarked on a 10-year campaign to illustrate ‘The Life of Christ’ instead. These New Testament paintings caused a sensation in the Paris Salon of 1894. The Tissot Bible was published two years later and the paintings went on a trans-Atlantic tour. Seen all together "the paintings are like stills from a Hollywood movie spectacular."writes Ken Johnson of The New York Times. The Brooklyn Museum purchased the 350 gouache paintings in 1900 (at John Singer Sargent's urging). 124 of these paintings are on display until Jan. 17, 2010. One can't deny that James Tissot was an accomplished and amazing painter. Follow link to view his art before the "Christ" series (as shown above in the top image).
of Brooklyn Museum Exhibit

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