Wednesday, February 22, 2012

The Cult of Beauty and Pre-Raphaelite links

This doesn't even begin to scratch the surface of what's on the web but it's a decent start. I wish that the Legion of Honor in SF were as large as the V&A. When I looked through the catalog, it was obvious that a lot of the choicest paintings have not traveled. But I'm grateful that we got what we did.

 Rossetti, Monna Vanna

Reviews from the SF Chronicle: 

"The boundary between art with a capital 'A' and the decorative arts is traversed by these artists," says Orr, who describes flamboyant and eccentric artists like Whistler and Rossetti, famous for their art and affairs, as the Kardashians of the 1870s. "To design a beautiful dress was as significant to them as a painting."

"The Cult of Beauty: The Victorian Avant-Garde 1860-1900," a large and caressingly lovely new show about the British Aesthetic Movement opening today at the Legion of Honor, invites visitors to view that era through a strikingly different and decidedly rosy lens. With its Pre-Raphaelite paintings of dreamy-eyed maidens and voluptuously writhing statues, blooming floral wallpapers and some strikingly modern furniture, the show captures the Aesthetes' driving "art for art's sake" ethos across a broad spectrum. Read more: SF Gate 

 Rossetti. Boca Bactia. 1859. Museum of Fine Arts, Boston

Informative page from the V&A: The V&A Aesthetic Movement
Naturally, there's an application for the iPad: iPad app for the cult of beauty

James Whistler, Battersea Bridge.

Whistler, The Girl in White

Lines and Colors Blog:

The Victorian Web:

 Beardsley, Salome. The Climax

Delaware Art Museum -They may have the most extensive collection of Pre-Raphaelite works in the US.


A Cuban In London said...

A couple of years ago the BBC screened a three- or four-part series on the pre-Raphaelites. I have to say that the whole cult of beauty is interesting up to a point, then, it makes feel as if I've eaten too much chocolate. Still, one of my favourite authors, Oscar Wilde, was involved in the movement up to his neck, so it's only with painting that this happens. I like the ambiguity of Rosetti's Monna Vanna.

Greetings from London.

namastenancy said...

Greetings back at you from sunny SF. I agree with the ultra-richness of too much of their work, in one place, at one time. That's why I commented in my review at the that the curators have done us a favor by eliminating the domestic clutter of those homes and hanging the paintings rather far apart. Besides, we had a lovely palate cleanser in the satirical cartoons of the time - Punch in particular had a field day with Oscar Wilde (before his trial). Afterwards, it wasn't so funny.