New Book | Revolutionary Paris and the Market for Netherlandish Art

Posted in books by Editor on December 8, 2017

From Brill:

Darius Spieth, with a foreword by Marc Fumaroli, Revolutionary Paris and the Market for Netherlandish Art (Leiden: Brill, 2017), 514 pages, ISBN: 978 90043 36988, €116 / $134.

Seventeenth-century Dutch and Flemish paintings were aesthetic, intellectual, and economic touchstones in the Parisian art world of the Revolutionary era, but their importance within this framework, while frequently acknowledged, has never attracted much subsequent attention. Darius Spieth’s Revolutionary Paris and the Market for Netherlandish Art reveals the dominance of ‘Golden Age’ pictures in the artistic discourse and sales transactions before, during, and after the French Revolution. A broadly based statistical investigation, undertaken as part of this study, shows that the upheaval reduced prices for Netherlandish paintings by about 55% compared to the Old Regime and that it took until after the July Revolution of 1830 for art prices to return where they stood before 1789.

Darius A. Spieth, PhD University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, is Professor of Art History at Louisiana State University. He is the editor of the Grove Guide to Art Markets and Collecting (forthcoming), and author of Napoleon’s Sorcerers: The Sophisians (2007).


Foreword by Marc Fumaroli
List of Illustrations
A Note on Currencies

1 From Eyesores to Blue Chip Art
Origins of the Parisian Marketplace for Netherlandish Painting
Art Publications and the Dissemination of Information
France as International Tastemaker for Golden Age Art After 1740
Royal Collections and Northern Masters, 1777–1792
The Twilight of the Auction Business, 1775–1825
The Fate of Golden Age Art Under Terror and Inflation
The Louvre and the ‘Artistic Conquests’ in Belgium and the Netherlands
The Post-Revolutionary Market for Netherlandish Art
The Expanding Mass Market for Copies and the Rise of the Bourgeoisie
Golden Age Art and Popular Culture
Netherlandish versus Italian Art
The Parisian Apartment: A Bourgeois Space for Art

2  On the Art of Surviving the Revolution: Jean-Baptiste Pierre Lebrun
Art Dealer to the Ancien Régime’s Elite, 1776–1789
Painful Adjustments, 1789–1795
Co-Conspirator of Jacques-Louis David, 1792–1794
From The Ministry of Finance to the Louvre, 1794–1799
A Long Good-Bye from the Louvre, 1799–1803
A Difficult Comeback as Dealer-Expert, 1801–1804
Deceptions of the Napoleonic Age, 1807–1813

3  A Long Good Bye to the Palais Royal: The Northern Pictures in the Orléans Collection
The Art Collections in the Palais Royal until 1780
Inside the Art Deal of the Century
The Netherlandish Pictures of the Palais Royal Collection
A Look Inside the Galeries De Bois

4  Liberty’s Toll on Beauty’s Price
Myths and Realities of the Parisian Auction Market in the 1790s
Turnover of the Parisian Art Auction Market and its Economic Context, ca. 1775–1850
The Evolution of Prices for Netherlandish Art in Revolutionary Paris
Bidding Wars: The Picture Trade with Great Britain
The ‘Guilty Industry’ and Netherlandish Art

5  Netherlandish Art in France: A History of Taste and Money across Three Centuries
Poussinists versus Rubenists
The Marquis D’argens and Academic Prejudices Against Northern Art
The Re-Evaluation of Netherlandish Aesthetics from David to Thoré
The Politicization of Nehterlandish Art in the Nineteenth Century
Class, Taste, and the First Art Price Rankings

Photograph Credits

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