Research On The Live of Gustave Courbet Art Essay

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The Early Life of the Artist

What were some of the significant childhood experiences in the early life of the artist?

Gustave was introduced to painting around the age of fourteen by "pere" Baud. He moved to Besancon in 1837 and developed his skills as a painter at the studio of a follower of the painter David.

http://www.musee-orsay.fr/en/collections/courbet-dossier/biography.html

Note any information on the education of the artist.

At the age of 20 Courbet enrolled in law school.

http://www.musee-orsay.fr/en/collections/courbet-dossier/biography.html

What was the artist's early career like? Was it as an artist or was it in another field?

While studying law Courbet found himself painting and ultimately made a copy of the Louvre by studying the works of Caravaggio. In his early career he painted as a romantic but The Revolution of 1848 made him change his direction to realism painting. He began to prefer painting what was going on in the world and using his art work to represent it and the daily lives of people.

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http://www.dropbears.com/a/art/biography/Gustave_Courbet.html

In his early years he created such works as The Stone Breakers, Man in despair, 1841; Courbet with a black dog, 1842; The wounded man, 1844-1854; The man with the leather belt. Portrait of the artist, 1845-1846.

http://www.musee-orsay.fr/en/collections/courbet-dossier/biography.html

Young Adult Life and Artistic Beginnings

Did the artist marry? If so, note any information on the marriage.

None found.

Did the artist have children? If so, note any information on the children.

None found.

What were the artist's early experiences as an artist?

In his early twenties he worked with two other painters, Steuben and Hesse, but decided to work on his own because he was unhappy. He would return home many times where he would create many self portraits. In 1846 he travelled to Belgium and the Netherlands where he studied the works of Rembrandt, Franz Hals and Jan Steen. Courbet became inspired to paint as these artists did; realistically.

http://simple.wikipedia.org/wiki/Gustave_Courbet

Courbet's work was wildly criticized in his early years when he began realism painting. He was a painter of figurative compositions which addressed the social and working conditions of society at the time.

http://www.discoverfrance.net/France/Art/Courbet/Courbet.shtml

What were the significant early works of art and what were they like?

Some of his early art works included Self-Portrait with Black Dog 1842 which was accepted for exhibition at the 1844 Paris Salon, A Burial At Ornans 1849 , The Wounded Man 1844, and Stone Breakers 1849 which has been called the first of his great works. Self Portrait with Black Dog is of a youthful and handsome Courbet with a black dog sitting on a mountain side. He looks very scholarly as he holds a pipe in one hand and a book and walking stick behind his back. A Burial at Ornans was a painting of the burial of his great uncle who had died a year earlier and he asked all the village people who had attended the funeral to come to his studio so he could paint them. In the painting there were men, women, children and priests. There was even a dog. They all hovered around the grave and you could see where some of the women were crying and wiping away their tears. The Wounded Man is also a self portrait of Courbet who is obviously slain as you can see the blood stained white shirt he is wearing. He is lying against a tree clutching his cloak with a sword behind his head. He doesn't look dead but more as if he was sleeping. Stone Breakers was a painting of a young man and an old man working by the roadside breaking rocks into small gravel.

http://simple.wikipedia.org/wiki/Gustave_Courbet

Historical Information

What major historical events took place around the world during the time the artist was alive? Give 2 - 3 significant historical events for each continent.

Europe

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1832 The first reform act was passed in Britain

1848 The Viennese Revolution

1854-1856 Crimean War in the Black Sea. Turkey, Britain, France, and Sardinia fight Russia.

Asia

1839-1842 Opium War in China results in Britain taking Hong Kong

1852 The Second Burma War

1854 Perry negotiates trade treaty with Japan

Africa

In 1822 the Ashanti War began

In 1847 Liberia became independent

In 1852 the South African Republic was formed.

North America

1848 Gold discovered at Sutter's Mill (Sacramento, CA)

1850 U.S. Congress passed the Fugitive Slave Law. The Underground Railroad is formed in response.

Apr. 12, 1861 Charleston's Fort Sumter in S.C. starts the American Civil War.

South America

1822 Brazil became independent

1846-1848 Mexican-American War.

1865 The War of Triple Alliance

http://www.historycentral.com/WH1400-1900/SAmerica/Index.html

Historical Information on the Style

What style did the artist work in? (This is noted for you at the beginning of this assignment).

Gustave Courbet was a realism artist.

Preble's Artform: an introduction to the visual arts

2. Describe the significant characteristics of this style.

One of the main characteristics of realism art is the ability to create portraits that were of ordinary and common things in life. There was much truthfulness, amorality and objectivity to realism art.

Preble's Artform: an introduction to the visual arts

3. Name some of the other artists who worked in this style.

Other artists who worked in this style of work were Rosa Bonheur, Thomas Eakins, Henry Ossawa Tanner and Edouard Manet (both a realist and impressionist)

Prebles' Artform: an introduction to the visual arts

4. Where and when did this style occur?

The earliest forms of realism occurred in the 18th Century in works such as John Singleton's Copley and Goya. The great realist era was in the middle of the 19th century in France.

http://www.artcyclopedia.com/history/realism.html

Highlights of Artistic Career

What were some of the highlights of the artistic career of the artist?

Courbet's career highlights is simply based on the recognition of his work. As a young artist he received recognition his work Self Portrait with a Black Dog in 1842 at the age of 23. He felt the need to move from being a Romantic painter to become a realist painter which was not looked highly upon in that era. Critics thought realism art was too simply and were tasteless. Courbet then began to paint more natural forms of art when he choose to use naked female body and this created an out roar in the art world as well as the community. No one wanted to see paintings of naked women and thought it was disgusting. Many of his works were censored and many were destroyed. To become profitable and become recognized Courbet realized that he needed to create paintings that would be rejected by the Salon and he did just so. He realized that whenever he submitted a painting to the Salon and it got rejected that he became more recognized. So he kept working on art that went against the grain of what it was "supposed" to be.

http://www.rehsgalleries.com/Gustave_Courbet_Bio.html

2. List any awards, honors and/or exhibitions of her/his art work.

Courbet won many awards at the Paris Salon and in 1871 was appointed President of the Art Commission. In 1848 he was a gold medal winner in the Salon and he was nominated to receive the French Legion of Honor in 1870 but he refused it. An exhibition of his works was held in 1882 at the Ecole des Beaux-Arts. A major exhibition of his work, "The Born Rebel Artist", opened in 2007 at the Grand Palais, and traveled to the Musee Fabre in Montpellier, France and the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York City during 2008.

http://simple.wikipedia.org/wiki/Gustave_Courbet

3. Briefly discuss several significant works by the artist. Name the works and tell a little about each.

Some of his early art works included Self-Portrait with Black Dog 1842 which was accepted for exhibition at the 1844 Paris Salon, A Burial At Ornans 1849 , The Wounded Man 1844, and Stone Breakers 1849 which has been called the first of his great works. Self Portrait with Black Dog is of a youthful and handsome Courbet with a black dog sitting on a mountain side. He looks very scholarly as he holds a pipe in one hand and a book and walking stick behind his back. A Burial at Ornans was a painting of the burial of his great uncle who had died a year earlier and he asked all the village people who had attended the funeral to come to his studio so he could paint them. In the painting there were men, women, children and priests. There was even a dog. They all hovered around the grave and you could see where some of the women were crying and wiping away their tears. The Wounded Man is also a self portrait of Courbet who is obviously slain as you can see the blood stained white shirt he is wearing. He is lying against a tree clutching his cloak with a sword behind his head. He doesn't look dead but more as if he was sleeping. Stone Breakers was a painting of a young man and an old man working by the roadside breaking rocks into small gravel.

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http://simple.wikipedia.org/wiki/Gustave_Courbet

The Bather is also one of Courbet's significant works because it marks his entry into nude art. The painting of The Bather is of a voluptuous woman naked from head to waist in a body of water. This type of painting was rejected by the Salon, shunned by females and it is even said that Napoleon hit the canvas with his riding crop in anger. He created many more painting of this caliber that was censored and some destroyed over the course of his career. We look at art differently today, so I view the painting of a realistic description of the female human body meshed with nature; water. Both are paired together in such a natural form that it is appealing.

http://www.rehsgalleries.com/Gustave_Courbet_Bio.html