Enfilade

Back to the Classroom — Graduate Seminar

Posted in teaching resources by Editor on August 27, 2010

Today closes our special week on teaching the eighteenth century. Warm thanks to Georgina Cole, Jennifer Germann, and Susan Dixon for commenting on Professor Plax’s undergraduate survey course. We owe Julie a great debt of gratitude for her willingness to share that syllabus as well as this one for a graduate course on the French Rococo! All the best to those of you who are, in fact, still finalizing your own syllabi for the fall and thinking about that first day of class . . .  -C.H.

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Professor Julie-Anne Plax

Pleasures, Pastimes, Parks and Pavilions:
The Spaces and Spectacles of Sociability in the French Rococo

This seminar will focus on French eighteenth-century art and architecture. In particular we will explore the intersection of art and shifting modes of social relationships and hierarchies in what could be termed “Rococo culture.”

TEXTS

I have not ordered any texts for this class. The books for the course will be on reserve at the main library and many of the shorter readings will be available as PDFs located in the D2L course site. We will be reading all, or substantial portions of the following books in case would like to order any of them from a preferred source.

  • William Reddy, The Navigation of Feeling: A Framework for the History of Emotions
  • Daniel Gordon. Citizens without Sovereignty: Equality and Sociability in French Thought, 1670-1789
  • François Bastide, The Little House
  • Jennifer Milam, Fragonard’s Playful Paintings: Visual Games in Rococo Art
  • Katie Scott, The Rococo Interior
  • Mary Sheriff, Moved by Love: Inspired Artists and Deviant Women in Eighteenth-Century France

COURSE REQUIREMENTS

This course requires extensive reading.  Weekly reading assignments must be done in advance of the Tuesday class meeting, since they will be discussed at that time.

  • seminar participation                                         25.5%
  • opinion papers                                                     32.5%
  • seminar paper                                                      32%
  • oral presentation based on the term paper    10%

Seminar Participation

A seminar can be successful only when all participants are prepared and ready to discuss the readings. It is expected that students will have completed all the assigned readings and at least perused the suggested readings. View this seminar as a time to clarify issues, to thrash out points of views, and to hash out new ideas with a sympathetic and engaged audience. Each week a pair of students will be responsible for leading the discussion. We will determine the grouping of students and the meetings for which they will be responsible during the first meeting. Discussion leaders will be responsible for framing the course of discussion, based on the required reading. The weekly discussion leaders should be flexible enough to allow the discussion to meander into uncharted waters when it proves fruitful to the seminar as a whole; I also expect the leaders to pull the discussion back on track if it begins to flounder. At the end of each meeting, I will spend a few minutes previewing the readings for the next week.

Opinion Papers

Each week you will turn in a 5-page minimum 6-page maximum “opinion” paper discussing the weeks reading. I am more interested in your thoughtful response to the readings than a description or summary of the content.  Each paper is worth 2.5 percentage points. They will not be graded but if the paper is not turned in, or deemed unacceptable, I will reduce the point value. Here are some questions that might be useful in thinking about the readings:

  • What sorts of concerns do the authors presuppose?  Do they present these concerns in a straightforward manner, or do they remain as simply implied assumptions?
  • How does the author frame the argument, and what strategies are used to make (or not) the argument?
  • In the case of the readings that do not refer specifically to the visual arts, how do you see them as applicable to the study of the history of art?
  • What are the larger issues the author addresses and how does the reading relate to previous readings.

Seminar Paper

The seminar paper will be the major project for the semester. This project is intended to help the art history student’s work toward publication; hence, the art history students should attempt to undertake original research. Art education and studio students’ papers should explore a topic that will enhance and expand their professional goals or artistic practice. All students in the seminar should view this paper as a means to articulate new ideas.  It is perfectly acceptable if conclusions are tentative. What is more important is the explanation of why they are so. The topic of the paper is your choice; however, you will need to consult with me about your paper topic.

  • Date Due: The last seminar meeting.
  • Length: Aim for 20 typewritten pages of text (not counting notes or illustrations).
  • Notes: You may use either footnotes or endnotes. Proper end note format must be followed; in-text parenthetical citations will not be accepted. Models for standard format can be found in Kate Turabian, A Manual for Writers of Term Papers, Theses and Dissertations, which is available at the bookstore.
  • Bibliography: A bibliography, following proper form, must be included at the end of the paper.
  • Illustrations: Please include photocopies of the art works you discuss in your paper. Indicate the illustrations in the text by: (fig. 1) after you first mention the work. The captions for the illustration should include the following information whenever possible: figure number, artist, name of work, date, location.

Oral Presentation

Each of you will present a 20-minute oral report based on your seminar paper.

GRADING

Grading will be based on the Art Department Grading System:

A = Excellent. One who answers all of the course requirements and performs at a level which is clearly outstanding.

B = Good. One who answers all of the course requirements and performs at a level measurably above average.

C = Fair. One who answers all of the course requirements and performs adequately in so doing.

D = Poor. One who answers all of the course requirements but performs on a level measurably below the average.

E = Failure. One who either does not complete all of the course requirements or does so inadequately or both.

Grades will take into consideration the subjective criteria normal to academic grading which accords attention to the difficulty of the material considered and the students’ improvement, development, attendance, and performance. Attendance at all seminar meetings is mandatory. Students are cautioned that a grade of C or below in Graduate work is considered inadequate.

Plagiarism, that is, copying of the language, ideas, and thoughts of others and passing them off as one’s original work is contrary to scholarly practice.  Please acknowledge the words of others with quotation marks and footnotes, but try to put thoughts into your own words and avoid excessive quotations. For the code of academic integrity see: http://studpubs.web.arizona.edu/policies/cacaint.htm.

COURSE CALENDAR

August 25: Introduction to the 18th Century

  • Professor Plax lectures

September 1: Sociability and Slippery Hierarchies

  • Daniel Gordon, Citizens without Sovereignty: Equality and Sociability in French Thought, 1670-1789, pp. 3-126.
  • William Reddy, The Navigation of Feeling: A Framework for the History of Emotions, pp. 112-72.
  • Thomas Crow, “A Public Space in the Making,” chapter 1 in Painters and Public Life in Eighteenth-Century Paris, pp. 22-44.
  • Dena Goodman, “Public Sphere and Private Life: Toward a Synthesis of Current Historiographical Approaches to the Old Regime,” History & Theory 31 (1992): 1-20.

September 8: Watteau’s fêtes galantes and the fêting of Watteau

  • Donald Posner, “Fêtes Galantes,” chapter 4 in Antoine Watteau, pp. 116-95.
  • Norman Bryson, “The Legible Body: LeBrun,” chapter 2 in Word and Image: French Painting of the Ancien Régime, pp. 29-57.
  • Norman Bryson, “Watteau and Reverie,” chapter 3 in Word and Image: French Painting of the Ancien Régime, pp. 58-88.
  • Mary Vidal, “Not Just Talk: The Recurring Theme of Conversation in Watteau’s Art,” chapter 1 in  Watteau’s Painted Conversations, pp. 11-43.
  • Colin Bailey, “Toute seule elle peut remplir et satisfaire l’attention: The Early Appreciation and Marketing of Watteau’s Drawings, with an Introduction to the Collecting of Modern French Drawings During the Reign of Louis XV,” in Watteau and his World, ed. Alan Wintermute, pp. 68-92.
  • Julie Anne Plax, “”Belonging to the In Crowd: The Bonds of Art and Friendship,” in French Genre Painting in the Eighteenth Century ed. Philip Conisbee, pp. 48-71.

September 15: New Genre, New Money

  • Denise Baxter, “Fashions of Sociability in Jean-François de Troy’s tableaux de mode, 1725-1738: Defining a Fashionable Genre in Early Eighteenth-Century France,” in Performing the “Everyday:” The culture of Genre in the Eighteenth Century ed. Alden Cavanaugh, pp. 27-46.
  • Jorg Ebeling, “Upwardly Mobile: Genre Painting and the Conflict between Landed and Moneyed Interests,” in French Genre Painting in the Eighteenth Century ed. Philip Conisbee, pp. 72-89.
  • Wolfgang Stechow and Christopher Comer, “The History of the Term Genre,” Bulletin of the Allen Memorial Art Museum 33, no. 2 (1975-76): 89-94.
  • JoLynn Edwards, “John Law and His Painting Collection: Connoisseur or Dupe?” in Art and Culture in the Eighteenth Century: New Dimensions and Multiple Perspectives ed. Elise Goodman, pp. 59-75.
  • Mary Salzman, “Decoration and Enlightened Spectatorship,” in Furnishing the Eighteenth Century: What Furniture can Tell Us bout the European and American Past, ed. Dena Goodman and Kathryn Norberg, pp. 155-65.

September 22: Dealers and Display, Consumers and Connoisseurs

  • Andrew McClellan, “Watteau’s Dealer : Gersaint and the Marketing of Art in Eighteenth-Century Paris,” Art Bulletin 78 (September 1996): 439-53.
  • Julie-Anne Plax, “The Meeting of High and Low Culture in Watteau’s Gersaint’s Signboard,” Watteau and the Cultural Politics of Eighteenth-Century France, pp. 154-82.
  • Krzysztof Pomian, “Dealers, Connoisseurs and Enthusiasts in Eighteenth-century Paris,” chapter 5 in Collectors and Curiosities: Paris and Venice, 1500-1800, pp. 139-168.
  • Colin Bailey, “Conventions of the Eighteenth-Century Cabinet de tableaux: Blondel d’Azincourt’s La première idée de la curiosité,” Art Bulletin 60 (September 1987): 431-47.
  • Denise Baxter, “Parvenu or honnête homme: The Collecting Practices of Germain-Louis de Chauvelin,” Journal of the History of Collections 20, (November 2008): 273-89.

September 29: Architecture  & Arrangements

  • Katie Scott. The Rococo Interior: Decoration and Social Spaces in Early Eighteenth-Century Paris, pp. 1-10; 81-117; 147-239.
  • Rochelle Ziskin, The Place Vendôme: Architectural and Social Mobility in Eighteenth-Century Paris, pp. 1-64.

October 6: Furniture & Furnishings

  • Mimi Hellman, “Furniture, Sociability and the Work of Leisure in Eighteenth-Century France,” Eighteenth-Century Studies 32 (1999): 414-45.
  • Mimi Hellman, “ The Joy of Sets,” in Furnishing the Eighteenth Century : What Furniture can Tell Us bout the European and American Past, ed. Dena Goodman and Kathryn Norberg, pp. 129-53.
  • Mimi Hellman, “Interior Motives: Seduction by Decoration in Eighteenth-Century France,” in Dangerous Liaisons: Fashion and Furniture in the eighteenth Century ed. by Harold Koda and Andrew Bolton, pp. 15-23.
  • Carolyn Sargentson, “Looking at Furniture Inside Out: Strategies of Secrecy and Security in Eighteenth-Century French Furniture,” in Furnishing the Eighteenth Century: What Furniture can Tell Us bout the European and American Past, ed. Dena Goodman and Kathryn Norberg, pp. 205-36.
  • Natcha Coquery, “The Language of Success: Marketing and Distributing Semi-luxury Goods in Eighteenth-Century Paris,” Journal of Design History 17 (2004): 71-81.
  • Dena Goodman, “The Secrétaire and the Integration of the Eighteenth-Century Self,” in Furnishing the Eighteenth Century: What Furniture can Tell Us bout the European and American Past, ed. Dena Goodman and Kathryn Norberg, pp. 183-203.

October 13: Pavilions of Seduction (Students will be asked to report on research progress)

  • François Bastide, The Little House, all.
  • Paula Radisch, “Performing the Libertine: Hubert Robert in the Bagatelle”, chapter 4 in Hubert Robert: Painted Spaces of Enlightenment, pp. 78-96.
  • Jill Casid “Commerce in the Boudoir,” in Women, Art and the Politics of Identity in Eighteenth-Century Europe ed. Melissa Hyde and Jennifer Milam, pp. 91-114.

October 20: Madame de Pompadour

  • Donald Posner, “Madame de Pompadour as a Patron of the Visual Arts,” Art Bulletin 72 (March 1990): 74-105.
  • Katie Scott, “Framing Ambition: The Interior Politics of Mme de Pompadour,” in Between Luxury and the Everyday: Decorative Arts in Eighteenth-Century France ed. Katie Scott and Deborah Cherry, pp. 110-52.
  • Colin Jones, Mme de Pompadour: Images of a Mistress, all.
  • Melissa Hyde, “The ‘Makeup’ of the Marquise: Boucher’s Portrait of Pompadour at her Toilette,” Art Bulletin 82 (September 2000): 453-75.
  • Perrin Stein, “Madame de Pompadour and the Harem Imagery at Bellevue,” Gazette des Beaux-arts 123 (January 1994): 29-44.

October 27: Luxury, Ladies, Rococo

  • Katie Scott, “The Rococo Exposed,” chapter 10 in The Rococo Interior, pp. 241-65.
  • Rémy Saisselin, “Neo-Classicism:  Images of Public Virtue and Realities of Private Luxury,” Art History 4 (March 1981): 15-36.
  • Jacqueline Lichtenstein, “Making Up Representation: The Risks of Femininity,” Representations 20 (Fall 1987): 77-87.
  • Madelyn Gutwirth, “Gendered Rococo as Political Provocation,” chapter 1 in The Twilight of the Goddesses: Women and Representation in the French Revolutionary Era, pp. 3-22.
  • Paula Radisich, “Deconstructing Dissipation,” Eighteenth-Century Studies 29 (Winter 1995-96): 222-25.
  • Melissa Hyde, “Boucher, Boudoir, Salon: cherchez la Femme,” chapter 1 in Making Up the Rococo: François Boucher and his Critics, pp. 45-81.

November 3: Theatrics!

  • Julie Anne Plax, “Watteau’s Departure of the Italian Comedians in 1697,” chapter 1 in Watteau and the Cultural Politics of Eighteenth-Century France, pp. 7-52.
  • Melissa Hyde, “Pastoral Make Believe: Gender Play from the Opéra Comique to the Salon,” chapter 4 in Making Up the Rococo: François Boucher and his Critics, pp. 145-78.
  • Mark Ledbury, “Boucher and the Theater,” in Rethinking Boucher, ed. Mark Ledbury and Melissa Hyde, pp. 133-60.
  • Mark Ledbury, “Intimate Dramas: Genre Painting and New Theater in Eighteenth-Century France,” in Intimate Encounters: Love and Domesticity in Eighteenth-Century France, ed. Richard Rand, pp. 49-67.

November 10: Playing!

  • Jennifer Milam, Fragonard’s Playful Paintings: Visual Games in Rococo Art, all.
  • Katie Scott, “Child’s Play,” in The Age of Watteau, Chardin and Fragonard: Masterpiece of French Genre: Painting, ed. by Colin Bailey, pp. 90-105.
  • Donald Posner, “The Swinging Women of Watteau and Fragonard,” Art Bulletin 64 (March 1982): 75-88.

November 17: Enthused!

  • Mary Sheriff, Moved by Love: Inspired Artists and Deviant Women in Eighteenth-Century France, all.

November 24: In the Garden

  • Dora Wiebenson, “French Picturesque Garden Types,” chapter V in The Picturesque Garden in France, pp. 81-107.
  • Kenneth Woodbridge, The Princely Gardens, The Origins and Development of the French Formal style, pp. 267-277.
  • Diana Ketcham, Le Desert de Retz, pp. 1-27.
  • Michel Baridon, “The Garden of the Perfectiobilists: Mereville and the Dessert de Retz,” in Tradition and Innovation in French Garden Art, ed John Hunt, and Michel Conan, pp. 121-34.
  • William Adams, “Labors in Perfection,” chapter 4 in The French Garden 1500-1800, pp. 75-102.
  • William Adams, “After Le Notre: a Sentimental Journey,” chapter 5 in The French Garden 1500-1800, pp. 103-38.
  • Brigitte Weltman-Aron, Introduction and “Natural Nature,” chapter 1 in On Other Grounds: Landscape Gardening and Nationalism in Eighteenth-century England and France, pp. 1-40.

December 1 and 8: Presentations