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Description - Watteau's Soldiers: Scenes of Military Life in Eighteenth-Century France by Aaron Wile

Celebrated for his dreamlike paintings of amorous aristocrats and melancholy actors, Antoine Watteau (1684 1721) also produced a number of captivating works with military subjects paintings and drawings early in his career. They were executed when France was engaged in the costly and ultimately disastrous War of the Spanish Succession (1701-14), but they look past the turbulence of battle and the heroic deeds of generals and kings to depict the more prosaic aspects of war marches, halts, encampments, and bivouacs. They focus on the quiet moments between the fighting, outside of military discipline, when soldiers could rest and daydream and smoke pipes and play cards. Although they owe a debt to seventeenth-century Dutch and Flemish precedents, they put forward a new, thoroughly modern vision of war in which the soldier's inner life, his experience of war, is brought to the fore. The inclusion of preparatory drawings after live models, alongside a group of major finished oils, highlights the relationship between drawing and painting in Watteau's work, and how he developed his ideas for the subject and composition of his paintings. The works are drawn from a wide range of US and European institutions including the Frick (The Portal of Valenciennes), Metropolitan Museum of Art, the Louvre, National Galleries of Scotland, Thyssen-Bornemisza Collection in Madrid and York Art Gallery (The Line of March). AUTHOR: Aaron Wile is the Anne L. Poulet Curatorial Fellow, The Frick Collection, New York, 2014-2016. He is a PhD candidate at Harvard University, where he is writing a dissertation on painting in France at the end of Louis XIV's reign. SELLING POINTS: Introduces a little-known aspect of a well-loved artist's career A lively, accessible essay that engages broader historical questions about the history of selfhood and the cultural history of war Includes the first catalogue raisonne of Watteau's military works 82 colour

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Book Details

ISBN: 9781907804793
ISBN-10: 190780479X
Format: Hardback
(250mm x 210mm x 0mm)
Pages: 112
Imprint: D Giles Ltd
Publisher: D Giles Ltd
Publish Date: 11-Jul-2016
Country of Publication: United Kingdom

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Author Biography - Aaron Wile

Aaron Wile is the Anne L. Poulet Curatorial Fellow, The Frick Collection, New York, 2014-2016. He is a PhD candidate at Harvard University, where he is writing a dissertation on painting in France at the end of Louis XIV's reign.

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