19th century - early 20th century - Realism and Academicism
Antigna's The Forced Halt, a living example of the spirit of 1848, dear to Courbet, is exhibited at the Salon in 1855, the very year in which Courbet publishes his manifest of Realism as a preface to his personal exhibition.
Corot (The Shepherd Star, 1864) and Courbet (The Stream of the Black Well, around 1865) exemplify the renewal of landscape.
Jean-André Rixens (The Death of Cleopatra, 1874), Jean-Joseph Benjamin-Constant (The Entry of Mehmet II into Constantinople on the twenty ninth of May 1453, 1876), Edouard Debat-Ponsan (Massage in the Harem, 1883) but also Jean-Paul Laurens (Saint John Chrysostom and the Empress Eudoxia, 1894) and Henri Martin (Portrait of Madame Sans, 1894), all pupils of Jules-Joseph Garipuy, have on occasion been grouped together under the label ‘Toulousan school of painting'. They illustrate different facets of fin-de-siècle Academicism. As such, they work on large decors – all of them work on the Capitole (town hall) – they paint society portraits but also work with orientalist painting. In this way, they distinguish themselves both from their Romantic predecessors – who often showed in their orientalist subjects how to lift the contemporary anecdote, observed on the fly, to the ranks of ‘great painting' – and from their contemporaries, dedicated to realism.
In 1866, to exalt the strength of Courbet, Zola mocks the orientalists, creators of showy painting, blind to reality, according to him. Orientalists of the last generation, they are less the heirs of the Orient dreamt of by Ingres or of the travels of Delacroix and more the heirs of the Academicism of Delaroche and of Gérôme (Anacreon, Bacchus and Love, 1848).
Jean-Paul LAURENS (Fourquevaux, 1838 - Paris, 1921),
Saint Jean Chrysostome et l'Impératrice Eudoxie,
Inv. 2004 1 156
Photo Daniel Martin