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Special Features Index  

 
Spotlight

Nineteenth-Century European Art

 
  European Art: Nineteenth-CenturySeveral Nineteenth-Century European Artists and art critics achieved a self-aware homosexual identity that is expressed in both their lives and their works, but lesbianism is only rarely depicted in terms of identity during this period.  
 
 
  Louise AbbemaLouise Abbéma (1858-1927) was a painter in the Impressionist style, as well as an engraver, sculptress, and writer. She is best known for her portraits and genre scenes and for her close relationship with actress Sarah Bernhardt.  
 
 
  AestheticismAestheticism was a theory of art and an approach to living that stressed the independence of art from all moral and social conditions and judgments. It influenced many gay and lesbian writers and artists at the turn of the twentieth century.  
 
 
  Arts and Crafts MovementThe Arts and Crafts movement created medieval-type artists' guilds, which have been seen as homosocial. The movement emphasized handcrafted decorative works of art and architecture as a reaction to the overtly industrial society that was flourishing by the 1850s.  
 
 
  Jean-Frederic BazilleJean-Frédéric Bazille (1841-1870), an early French Impressionist, is remembered as a great talent whose full potential was never realized because of his early death.  
 
 
  Aubrey BeardsleyAubrey Beardsley (1872-1898) was an English decadent and Symbolist artist who used his gifts for caricature and grotesquerie to attack Victorian sexual values. His work has been immensely influential, and can be especially discerned in the stylized lines of Art Nouveau.  
 
 
  Rosa BonheurRosa Bonheur (1822-1877) was the most popular artist of nineteenth-century France and was the first woman to be awarded the Grand Cross of the French Legion of Honor.
 
 
 
  Hippolyte FlandrinHippolyte Flandrin (1809-1864) created studies of male youth that are richly homoerotic, though the devoutly religious artist apparently did not conceive of them as such.  
 
 
  Theodore GericaultThéodore Géricault (1791-1824) may be the best known nineteenth-century visual artist associated with Romanticism. His art glorifies the irrational, the subjective, the morbid, the overly emotional, the unpredictable, and the bizarre.  
 
 
  Anna Elizabeth KlumpkeAnna Elizabeth Klumpke (1856-1912) is best known today as the last lover of acclaimed French painter Rosa Bonheur, but she was an accomplished artist in her own right.  
 
 
  Eugene JanssonEugène Jansson (1862-1915), sometimes described as Sweden's first gay artist, has only recently begun to receive the international attention that his accomplishments merit. Though his nocturnal cityscapes were much in demand by collectors, he stopped painting them in 1904 in favor of works featuring young workers, sailors, and athletes--usually shown nude.  
 
 
  Hans von MareesHans von Marées (1837-1887) was a nineteenth-century German painter who created homoerotic drawings and paintings, especially male nudes in bucolic settings or in scenes from classical mythology.  
 
 
  Walter PaterWalter Pater (1839-1894) was an influential Victorian critic and scholar. His stylistic elegance and dangerous ideas about art, combined with rumors that he was homosexual, made his name virtually synonymous with gay sensibility during the late nineteenth century.  
 
 
  Victorine MeurentVictorine Meurent (1844-1927) is best known as the model for a number of paintings by Édouard Manet, but she was also an artist in her own right. The loss of her identity has recently been seen as symbolic of the fate of women artists.  
 
 
  Ricketts and ShannonCharles Ricketts (1866-1931) and Charles Shannon (1863-1937) were partners in life as well as in art. Though they pursued independent careers, they also collaborated on a number of creative projects, including book design.  
 
 
  Simeon SolomonBritish artist Simeon Solomon (1840-1905) chose to live openly as a homosexual at a time when it was not socially acceptable to do so. His career was destroyed when he was convicted of buggery in 1873.  
 
 
  SymbolistsThe Symbolist movement in painting and literature flourished from 1886 to 1905. It was the first self-consciously queer movement in Western art history. The Cult of the Diva, with its attendant homoerotic impulse, was central to the ethos of the Symbolists, who were also called Decadents--a term more or less interchangeable with homosexuality in the public mind at the time.  
 
 
  Henry Scott TukeHenry Scott Tuke (1858-1929) created works that celebrate the beauty of male youth, as well as the artist's lifelong love of the sea, swimming, and sailing.  
 
 
 

 
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