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Michel Laclotte (Ed.) - The Art and Spirit of Paris (2 Volume Set) - ( Item 115182 )

Published in USA by Abbeville Press. 2003. Reprint. 2 Fine Hardbacks. Very Good+ slipcase. Wear to bottom rear edge of slipcase. 12 x 13.75 inches (30 x 35 cm). Two volume set. Blue cloth bindings with illustrated panels to front boards. Fine condition throughout. All the arts--painting, sculpture, architecture, urban design, interior design, graphic design, photography, film, fashion, the theater, and opera--have played a role in creating the enduring spirit of Paris. From a primitive village huddled on an island in the middle of the Seine, Paris rose to glory as a medieval and Renaissance center for art, as the cradle of the Enlightenment, and as the crucible of modern art and architecture. It remains a world center of innovation in art, architecture, and design, and one of the most thoroughly pleasurable of all modern cities. Assembled under the editorial direction of Michel Laclotte, former director of the Musee du Louvre, and with the participation of outstanding scholars on both sides of the Atlantic, "The Art and Spirit of Paris spans more than 6,000 years of cultural history. In two volumes, comprising nine insightful and wide-ranging chapters, and with approximately 1,500 illustrations, the authors chronicle the history of the visual arts in Paris, tracing their evolution and that of the social systems that supported them. Volume II begins at 1800, as Napoleon consolidates his power and determines to make Paris the most beautiful city the world has seen. Chapter 5 treats his brief era, which would echo in the French imagination for decades after, and which begins the reign of Paris as "Capital of the Nineteenth Century." The battles of classicism and romanticism and the advent of a modern "engineer's architecture" of glass and iron are followed in chapter 6 by the glorious Ville Lumiere of Second Empire Paris, with its remarkable world's fairs. Chapter 6 also treats the aftermath of the Commune, when a "New Painting" would be invented bythe most beloved artists of the French tradition, including Manet, Renoir, Monet, and Cezanne. Chapter 7 brings us to fin de siecle Paris, the Belle Epoque, and the run-up to World War 1, when a remarkable coterie of artists, including Picasso, invent an art for the new century. Chapter 8 examines the period between the wars, an era of refinement and consolidation in the arts, and chapter 9 brings the story of Paris up to the present, examining the remarkable ways Paris has yet again remade herself, as a city of spectacle and guardian of her remarkable past, while remaining a vital center of fashion, theater, and the visual arts. A lavish selection of illustrations, most reproduced in color, complements the lively, informative texts with a revealing mixture of muchloved masterpieces and little-known discoveries. Completing the visual impact of these luxurious volumes are 9 photographic portfolios, featuring classic black-and-white pictures, reproduced in duotone, by such masters as Brassai, Henri Cartier-Bresson, Robert Doisneau, and Andre Kertesz, which capture the spirit of Paris in visual essays on such subjects as the Seine, Paris by night, shops and cafes, and the city's streets and boulevards. Finally, an extensive chronology--spanning both volumes and detailing various aspects of Parisian history--and the meticulous bibliography ensure the high level of scholarship.

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