William Bouguereau books?
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    William Bouguereau books?

    In Barnes and Noble, I came across the book "Classical Painting Atelier" by Juliette Aristides. The paintings featured within were very inspiring, but I was most inspired by the page on William Bouguereau. I looked up more of his works online and I was incredibly fascinated by them...the photo-realism of his paintings is simply breathtaking. However, when I tried looking for books on Bouguereau, I had encountered difficulty finding any. I went to several different bookstores and they seem to have books on most of the other artists (even 5 books on Caravaggio), but none on Bouguereau. I don't see him mentioned in that many art books covering the time frame in which he lived either. Is there a reason?

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    He was very well known in his time. Currently his works are more popular again.
    Remember he was painting at the same time as the impressionists. They are what was more regarded for many years.
    A book is being prepared. See http://www.artrenewal.org/museum/b/B...lliam/bio1.asp
    for book, articles, pics etc.

    edit to add: The ARC book is coming out next year and will go for like $350.
    I checked out amazon and this might be better.
    http://www.amazon.com/s/ref=nb_ss_gw...rds=Bouguereau

    If you are interested in why some great painters from that era are less well known check out
    tha Ross King book called "The Judgment of Paris"

    Last edited by Craig D; November 11th, 2008 at 05:42 PM.
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    I'm pretty sure that ARC book has been "out soon" since I was on dialup.

    I don't see him mentioned in that many art books covering the time frame in which he lived either. Is there a reason?
    Craig D got it, he was very, very well known and rich in his time but other things were going on that were arguably more important in the broad art history sense. (not even just the impressionists, the Pre Raphaelites for instance.)
    They went in the history books, he did not.

    You seem to be drawn to work of that era/style, I assume you are familiar with ARC?
    http://www.artrenewal.org/
    It's the largest database of that sort of stuff you're likely to find. You'll probably like a lot of it.

    Try Leighton, Alma Tadema, Godward, Gerome, Ingres.

    For more painty stuff, Sargent, Boldini, , Whistler, Waterhouse, Repin, Zorn, Tissot, Bastien Lepage.

    This is a very decent book on that whole Victorian era school, not much boogie but lots of others you'll likely enjoy.
    http://www.amazon.com/Victorian-Pain...6448876&sr=8-1
    Used copies for 15 bucks and it's a huge "not going through the letterbox" kinda book, decent overview of that whole thing.

    It's a shame there isn't a definitive Boogie book but hey, I'm still waiting for an affordable Boldini, such is life

    Last edited by Flake; November 11th, 2008 at 09:36 PM.
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    you could also purchase a book on
    Bouguereau at amazon.com

    at 20.00 bucks its not a bad deal

    edit- it seems Craig D beat me to the link.

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    Bouguereau has been one of the hardest artists for me to track down! I'm so glad you guys posted these books; I will definitely think about purchasing them if I can.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Victor B View Post
    you could also purchase a book on
    Bouguereau at amazon.com

    at 20.00 bucks its not a bad deal

    edit- it seems Craig D beat me to the link.
    This is the book I have.
    The reproductions are quite good.

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    Thanks a lot for that link, Victor I've been looking for a book about him too.

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    I have both the Aristide book and In the Studios of Paris: William Bouguereau and His American Students
    Both are great but the first is more art instructions and the second is more history. The images are awesome too and there is great insight as to how ateliers worked.

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    I'll check out "The Judgment of Paris" book, and the ARC book sounds great but yeah that's so much money. Thanks for mentioning all those artists Flake, I've been looking for artists in a similar vein! It just stroke me as weird that, even nowadays, not that many people want to write a book on him. That book on Amazon looks good, thanks for the link! What a great birthday present

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    Quote Originally Posted by Flake View Post
    I'm pretty sure that ARC book has been "out soon" since I was on dialup.
    True. Don't hold your breath.


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    This is off topic, but I wouldn't consider Bouguereau a photo-realistic artist. Photo-realists try to make their paintings look like they actually are photos, and I don't think that's true about Bouguereau.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Serpian View Post
    This is off topic, but I wouldn't consider Bouguereau a photo-realistic artist. Photo-realists try to make their paintings look like they actually are photos, and I don't think that's true about Bouguereau.
    That's a good point. I didn't intend photo-realism like that, I meant that his works looked so lifelike, that with some of them if you look at them from a short distance away...they could be mistaken for an actual photo.

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    In the Studios of Paris is a great book. It is all about Bouguereau and his American students.
    I got mine at the Legion of Honor in SF for $50. So I would check at art museums before spends $150 at amazon.

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    Wow what a coincidence. I just ordered some Bouguereau books from my library yesterday as well as that Atelier one. There were not many to find, sadly.

    And Flake you just listed some of my favorite painters so I'll have to check out the ones I do not recognize.

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    It saddens me, I was looking through this book with 1001 paintings from throughout the centuries, and there was no mention of Bouguereau at all.

    On another note, I read that Bouguereau produced about 800 works. On websites like ARC and others though, I only see about 200. If the ARC book claims it will feature or mention all of those works, then why don't I see any of the other 600 works online or anything? Are they in private hands, not available?

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    Quote Originally Posted by FlameDragon View Post
    It saddens me, I was looking through this book with 1001 paintings from throughout the centuries, and there was no mention of Bouguereau at all.
    I mean no offence in saying this but Bougereau was not a historically significant painter. What he was doing was nothing more then standard French academy art at the time. He was just the best at it. In my art history class he was mentioned for about 30 seconds to show an example of what the realists and impressionists were rebelling against. He may have been a great painter but he didn't do anything to impact art other then to keep the french academies going in their neoclassical ways.

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    Quote Originally Posted by sweetoblivion314 View Post
    He may have been a great painter but he didn't do anything to impact art ...
    William Bouguereau was at the forefront of the Academie Julian, which served as the first official institution where women could train and receive proper art instruction, a right that had pretty much been reserved for men up until that point.

    And he was as a teacher a tremendous influence on numerous artists that made fame as painters in their later careers.

    I would hardly say he didn't do anything to impact art....
    Research a bit further beyond what's being served to you in art history class..

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    drawing, and ugly, and nothing else." JAD Ingres, Ecrits sur l'art
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    Quote Originally Posted by Art_Addict View Post
    William Bouguereau was at the forefront of the Academie Julian, which served as the first official institution where women could train and receive proper art instruction, a right that had pretty much been reserved for men up until that point.
    Rodolphe Julian the man who started the institution allowed women to study. Bouguereau would not even begin teaching there for 5 years after its inception.

    I am not going to argue with you further. And I do not appreciate the snide comment about my knowledge of art history. It was inappropriate. My statements are spoken using a large scale view of the art world as a whole. Whether his students became successful is of no consequence. The fact is that he did not cause any major changes, controversies or upheavals in the art world.

    Last edited by sweetoblivion314; November 22nd, 2008 at 11:07 PM.
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    The book was not just listing painters/paintings who had significant impact though, it was featuring 1001 paintings from throughout the centuries that they (the authors) claimed were worth looking at. For such a large collection to omit his works was surprising.

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    Quote Originally Posted by FlameDragon View Post
    it was featuring 1001 paintings from throughout the centuries that they (the authors) claimed were worth looking at.
    That's a pretty personal call though. I'm fairly sure very few of my personal favourites would be on that list either..

    Edit: Drifting off topic but regarding "Worth looking at", there's also "why are you looking?".

    For me, a guy trying to learn how to paint, an unfinished study is worth more than an awesomely polished final. I don't think I've seen any unfinished Boogies but there are many Waterhouse studies, half finished paintings etc.

    As a student they're automatically more interesting to me, to an art historian they're kinda meaningless. (just thinking out loud here, not really on topic.)

    Last edited by Flake; November 23rd, 2008 at 08:25 PM.
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    Quote Originally Posted by sweetoblivion314 View Post
    Rodolphe Julian the man who started the institution allowed women to study. Bouguereau would not even begin teaching there for 5 years after its inception.

    I am not going to argue with you further. And I do not appreciate the snide comment about my knowledge of art history. It was inappropriate. My statements are spoken using a large scale view of the art world as a whole. Whether his students became successful is of no consequence. The fact is that he did not cause any major changes, controversies or upheavals in the art world.
    lighten up man.

    Whether his students became successful is of no consequence? I would argue it is.

    The fact that he made no major changes, controversies or upheavals from a contemporary point of view could be seen as something positive...

    And you said he didn't do anything to impact art..... I think that statement is just way too harsh. Just look at the amount of realist painters today who are influenced or inspired by him.
    It depends on the standards I guess..

    I meant no offense sweetoblivion.

    cheers,
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    If you like that type of art, and I do, then Bouguereau does it best. To say that Bouguereau was not a historically significant painter isn't offensive, it's just the truth. History is written by the victors, and Bougeureau and co didn't win that particular art battle... Although history is constantly being revised and people and events that didn't seem important at the time might come to be considered more valuable at a later time - which is what I think is happening now (maybe, who knows). Some artists that are currently learning their trade are looking at artists like Bouguereau and turning away from the modernist influences of contemporary art. Who can predict which artists will be remembered as the most influential in a few hundred years time? So forget about who is 'more influential' if you're an artist (as opposed to an Art Historian) and just look at who you enjoy more, otherwise you're being influenced by the crowd and you'll never speak with your own voice. I like Bouguereau because his paintings are DAMN SEXY, even if they are printed on boxes of chocolates.

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    Quote Originally Posted by FlameDragon View Post
    The book was not just listing painters/paintings who had significant impact though, it was featuring 1001 paintings from throughout the centuries that they (the authors) claimed were worth looking at. For such a large collection to omit his works was surprising.
    1001 paintings from the whole of art history is a tiny number. I'm sure anyone with an art historical background could find many more egregious omissions in any list like that.


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    Take a look at the work of Vermeer if you want to see a realist who is also a consummate artist.

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    Here's a look inside Bouguereau's atelier, from one of his students, to give you an idea of what it was like. By Jefferson Chalfant:

    Attached Images Attached Images  
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    thats so cool, wish I could live back in those days, especially if i were rich.

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    these schools/approaches still exist if you can find them.

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    Yeah, it would be great to be in such an environment.

    Also, it's nice that at least ArtRenewal seems to feature him prominently.

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    Quote Originally Posted by FlameDragon View Post
    Also, it's nice that at least ArtRenewal seems to feature him prominently.
    ArtRenewal should be renamed the "Bouguerea Fan Club" - it's their raison d'etre (to use a phrase that I'm sure they would approve of - being french and all - it must be more valid).

    I like what ARC does, the same way a liberal muslim likes what suicide bombers do... I joke I joke - they are great, just a little bit too extremist and closed minded for my tastes.

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    Good news, that ARC William Bouguereau book is finally coming out on September 15! http://www.arc-store.com/wibocara.html

    900 pages, 700+ works of his featured. It was a long wait, but definitely looks worth it.

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