- Publisher: The Metropolitan Museum of Art
- Pages: 376
- Illustrations: 350 in full color
- Dimensions: 9 1/2'' x 11''
- Format: Hardcover
- Authors: James David Draper and Edouard Papet
- ISBN: 9780300204315
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Prodigiously gifted and deeply tormented, Jean-Baptiste Carpeaux (1827–1875) was the greatest nineteenth-century French sculptor before Rodin. From humble origins in northern France, he rose to become the preeminent artistic genius of the Second French Empire, winning prestigious public and private commissions that admitted him to the upper echelons of society, and that remain familiar landmarks today. But behind his artistic achievements lay an anguished personal life. Carpeaux's volatile and at times violent character destroyed his marriage and alienated his children; and the cancer that eventually killed him at the age of forty-eight caused him years of unspeakable suffering.
Based on newly discovered drawings and correspondence and on a wealth of archival material, this major monograph presents the entire span of Carpeaux's career, situating the works of art in the political and aesthetic contexts of their time as well as within the artist's tumultuous life. Through a close examination not only of the sculptures for which he is renowned but also of the circumstances and preliminary sketches that gave rise to them, this handsome new publication reveals Carpeaux as an embodiment of the emotionally charged artistic climate of his era. The book's numerous essays, accompanied by the most detailed chronology ever published of the artist's life and beautiful color illustrations of Carpeaux's wrenching representations of human forms, make this the definitive resource on Carpeaux and his creations.
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