Olympia: Paris in the Age of Manet

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HarperCollins, 1992 - Art - 329 pages
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This volume provides an account of the art and politics during the Second French Empire, from 1852 to 1870, during the reign of Napoleon Bonaparte. Paris during the reign of Napoleon was a fascinating period, filled with accounts of frivolity, eccentricity, and scandal, and its figures were larger than life: Napoleon himself, Eugenie, Berlioz, Wagner, Hugo, Zola, Manet, Monet and the "great horizontals". Americans, English, Germans, Italians and Russians went to Paris for culture, art and, a bit of undisciplined hedonism. The author presents this period with an eye on the "Olympia", a painting by Édouard Manet that caused shock and astonishment when it was first exhibited in Paris in 1865. Along with analysis of Manet's paintings, the author relates the story of impressionism and the community of artists Manet inspired.

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OLYMPIA: Paris in the Age of Manet

User Review  - Jane Doe - Kirkus

Friedrich (Glenn Gould, The Grave of Alice B. Toklas—both 1989; City of Nets, 1986, etc.) now brings his rare historical imagination and narrative gifts to the art and politics, frivolity ... Read full review


Empress Eugenie
Berthe Morisot

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About the author (1992)

Otto Friedrich (1929-1995) was a journalist and cultural historian. A contributing editor at The Saturday Evening Post and Time magazine, he was the author of fourteen books, including Before the Deluge: A Portrait of Berlin in the 1920s.

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