New Book | Artistes, savants et amateurs: Art et sociabilité

Posted in books by Editor on July 19, 2016

A collection of essays that emerged from the conference Art et Sociabilité au XVIIIe siècle
(Paris, 23–25 June 2011) is now available from Mare et Martin:

Jessica Fripp, Amandine Gorse, Nathalie Manceau, and Nina Struckmeyer, eds., Artistes, savants et amateurs: Art et sociabilité au XVIIIe siècle (1715–1815) (Paris: Les Éditions Mare et Martin, 2016), 296 pages, ISBN: 979-1092054422, 35€.

300x450_artiste-savantLa notion de sociabilité a fait l’objet, depuis quelques années, d’un renouvellement historiographique important. La complexité de cette notion impose pour son étude une approche pluridisciplinaire qui fasse appel aussi bien à la sociologie qu’à la philosophie, à l’anthropologie qu’à l’histoire de l’art.

Ce volume rassemble des études de spécialistes internationaux et explore la diversité des échanges sociaux dans le monde artistique du XVIIIe siècle. En examinant la sociabilité des divers acteurs de la création artistique, ces textes analysent les réseaux formés par le commerce des objets matériels, à travers l’étude des collections, du marché de l’art ou des expositions, et par le commerce des idées, à travers l’étude des écrits sur l’art et de l’art de la conversation. Le rôle des pratiques sociales au sein de la sphère publique dans l’évolution de la production artistique et des échanges matériels, économiques et intellectuels constitue donc l’objet de cet ouvrage collectif.

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T A B L E  D E S  M A T I È R E S

Préface, Étienne Jollet
Introduction: La sociabilité, une notion équivoque, Jessica L. Fripp, Amandine Gorse, Nathalie Manceau et Nina Struckmeyer

• Le peintre-gentleman : un modèle de sociabilité et ses variations dans l’Angleterre du dix-huitième siècle, Elisabeth Martichou
• Entre hommage et parodie : une conversation graphique entre Watteau et Oppenord, Jean-François Bédard
• Behind Closed Doors: Charles-Antoine Coypel and le théâtre de société, Esther Bell

• A case study in sociabilité: Bachelier’s École royale gratuite de dessin, Reed Benhamou
• La sociabilité à l’Académie de France à Rome sous le directorat de Charles-Joseph Natoire (1752–1775), Susanna Caviglia
• Les cercles des artistes allemands à Paris autour de 1800, Frauke Josenhans /  Nina Struckmeyer
• Painters and Parish Life in Eighteenth-Century Paris: Art, Religion, and Sociability, Hannah Williams

• Friendship at the Salon, Jessica L. Fripp
• Fêting the Hunt in Eighteenth-Century Painting, Julie Anne Plax
• Le tableau de mode et Hogarth – la peinture de genre dans la première moitié du XVIIIe siècle : entre autodérision et critique sociale, Jörg Ebeling

• Les chimères de la République des Arts. Fonction et expérimentation du fac-similé scientifique dans la première moitié du XVIIIe siècle, Valérie Kobi
• Les dictionnaires des Beaux-Arts au XVIIIe siècle : pour qui et pourquoi ?, Gaëtane Maës
• Le commerce de la peinture dans les Salons de Diderot, Stéphane Lojkine
• L’œil du spectateur : incarnation d’une nouvelle sociabilité, Isabelle Pichet
• Des hommes et des œuvres : sociabilités et associations dans le musée parisien autour de 1800, Noémie Étienne

• Paris/Provinces : une sociabilité savante et artistique au XVIIIe siècle vue au travers des correspondances privées, ou les échanges épistolaires comme instruments de la sociabilité, Patrick Michel
• Les classiques de Weimar en dialogue avec la culture parisienne, Boris Roman Gibhardt
• Les Souvenirs d’Élisabeth Vigée Le Brun : distinction et sociabilité dans une Vie d’artiste, Bernadette Fort

Bibliographie générale
Auteurs Remerciements










Call for Papers | Art and the Environment in Britain, 1700–Today

Posted in Calls for Papers by Editor on July 19, 2016


From the conference website:

Art and the Environment in Britain, 1700–Today
Université Rennes 2 Haute Bretagne, 2–3 March 2017

Proposals due by 3 September 2016

The concern of artists for the fate of their environment—understood as the natural world in which they breathe, live, and create—is often thought to be a relatively recent phenomenon. The term ‘environmental art’ was indeed coined in the 1960s, while more recently eco-art has been used to refer to the rise of ecological awareness and pressing concerns for sustainability, with a more specifically political and activist take on environmental art. Recent exhibitions in Britain, such as Radical Nature: Art and Architecture for a Changing Planet, 1969–2009 at the Barbican and Earth: Art of a Changing World at the Royal Academy, both held in 2009, or Art and Climate Change presented in 2006 and 2007 in London and Liverpool, along with the Art & Environment conference held at Tate Britain in 2010, testify to this recent interest in environmentally-conscious practices. Contemporary artistic practices directly engage with the environment, thus displaying multi-faceted relationships between British visual arts and the surrounding world of trees, plants, animals, and even sounds.

However, the contemporary focus on preservation and political activism should not obfuscate the fact that the interaction between Britons and their environment has a much older history. Visual artists from earlier periods also had something to say, both in pictures and in related writings, about their place as humans cohabiting with non-humans, both animate and inanimate, in a physical world whose boundaries were relentlessly pushed back and transformed. As explorers and scientists uncovered new areas—from the far reaches of the earth to that of human ancestry—these artists reacted to an expanding environment that elicited all kinds of emotions, from excitement and wonder to, all too quickly, anxiety and a sense of loss. The British countryside, largely mediated by the visual representations of eighteenth-century landscape painters, has now become artistic heritage, part of a national identity defined by an osmotic relationship with exceptionally hospitable surroundings. The way eighteenth- and nineteenth-century artists represented—and, in the case of landscape gardeners, actively refashioned—a natural world on which cities impinged at a quickening pace in fact often bore the mark of an awareness that what they contemplated and plundered for ideas and ideals was in constant flux. The advent of the Industrial Revolution was to be one of the most decisive illustrations of the transformative power of man over a land so far presented as a timeless Eden. Brought up with the Enlightenment notion that emotional engagement was mandatory for any self-regarding man of feeling, British artists were the prime observers of and witnesses to the alterations that humankind imposed on the natural substrate that ensured its maintenance. Just as their productions betrayed the preoccupations of their times, their personal takes on the relationship between humans and their environment, disseminated through visual representations, contributed to shaping contemporary debates.

The word environment as in ‘nature, or conditions in which a person or thing live’ did not appear until 1827, at which time it was used by the reformer Thomas Carlyle to translate the German Umgebung. The much older verb ‘to environ’, in use in the English language since the late fourteenth century, had come from the French environner and conjured up the image of a circle with a centre around which other elements turned, or veered. For centuries, the centre of this circle was firmly believed to be humankind. Yet, as Keith Thomas has made it quite clear in Man and the Natural World: Changing Attitudes in England 1500–1800 (1983), man’s theologically grounded belief in his total dominion over nature was gradually, over the course of the three centuries spanned by the British historian’s study, dented by “new arguments,” “new conditions,” and “new sensibilities.” As what Thomas called the “dethronement of man” had started a century earlier at the very least, Charles Darwin’s 1859 Origin of Species was to provide the final nail with which to close the coffin of a certain human uniqueness tightly shut. Closer to us, the momentous post-human turn in the humanities—an umbrella term that encompasses an amazing variety of paradigm shifts—currently contributes to reinforcing the idea that humans live in a symbiotic environment characterised by a porous line with non-human animals and machines, and where New Materialist theories such as Jane Bennett’s go as far as claiming agency for ‘things’ such as food, commodities, electricity, and minerals. Part of our scientific committee, T. J. Demos advocates the definition of a post-anthropocentric political ecology. His very latest book, Decolonizing Nature, Contemporary Art and the Politics of Ecology, published in 2016, posits that creativity, and more specifically contemporary art, are instrumental in developing this less possessive relationship to nature.

Whether one thinks of environment as context, setting, climate change, green spaces or sounds, today’s epistemology invites us to rethink man’s relation to the external world to the extent that the ‘inside’ and ‘outside’ coalesce, nature and culture merge, man and animal are reconfigured. How have British artists responded to these shifting perceptions of the world around them, of this great swirling circle of life and non life in which they found—or imagined—themselves diversely positioned, for a long time at the centre, then in a more undefined place—at the margin even? How has art itself positioned itself in this newly defined environment? A precursor to such interrogations, environmental art was early on intended as a decidedly extensive term, which, due to the American influence of Robert Smithson, came to encompass both sites and non-sites, both the pastoral and the urban. With the introduction of Environmental art departments in British art schools in the 1980s, the environment has been understood by artists as all the different contexts available to them outside of the gallery. We see this conference as an ideal opportunity to highlight these tensions between different definitions and to look into terminologies, as well as historical variations; to explore the links between representation and preservation; the way British artists have represented animals, natural elements, and the climate, and their preoccupation with environmental aesthetics and the altered positioning of humankind in the world, in a British context. Abstracts of about 400 words should be uploaded, along with a short biographical note, to the conference webpage.

Laurent Châtel (csti-HDEA EA 4086, Paris Sorbonne), Charlotte Gould (Prismes, Sorbonne Nouvelle), and Sophie Mesplède (ACE EA 1796, Université Rennes 2)

Scientific Committee
Laurent Châtel, Sophie Mesplède, and Charlotte Gould
T. J. Demos, Professor of History of Art and Visual Culture, and Director of the Centre for Creative Ecologies, UC Santa Cruz
Anne Helmreich, Dean of the TCU College of Fine Arts, Fort Worth, Texas
Marie-Madeleine Martinet, Emeritus Professor of British Visual Culture, Sorbonne, Paris
Corinne Silva, Artist and Associate Lecturer at London College of Communication, UCL
Anne Goarzin, Professor of Irish Literature and Visual Culture, Rennes II University