Those of the earth - The figure of the peasant from Courbet to Van Gogh - Exhibition catalogue
From the brutal and crude portrait of a peasant world prey to the most violent passions, drawn up by the writer Émile Zola (1840-1902) in La Terre (1887), to the lyrical and heroic vision of the "people of the land" in the collection of short stories Ceux de la glèbe (1889) by the Belgian Camille Lemonnier (1844-1913), In the second half of the 19th century, the contemporary countryside was the subject of a wide range of ideological projections, whether nostalgic, conservative, socialist, progressive or purely aesthetic.
With the emergence of realism and its two main figures, Gustave Courbet (1819-1877) and Jean-François Millet (1814-1875), painters with rural origins, the peasant theme in the field of fine arts was renewed and became a veritable phenomenon on a European scale, soon transcending the movements. Realists, naturalists, symbolists, modernists and anti-modernists all sought to portray the peasant as a new central figure in contemporary society.
Through more than 80 works, the exhibition Ceux de la Terre (Those of the Earth) aims to understand the emergence of this cultural phenomenon, while approaching the intention and the specific look of each artist behind the development of the rural world as a pictorial subject.
Exhibition at the musée Courbet, Ornans from 27June to 16 October 2022.
200 pages / 105 illustrations
Éditions Silvana Editoriale