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Inventing Impressionism: Paul Durand-Ruel and the Modern Art Market


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One of the most forward-thinking art dealers of all time, Paul Durand-Ruel (1831-1922) played a crucial role in the rise of French Impressionism. This book explores how Durand-Ruel discovered, exhibited, and shaped an audience for Impressionist paintings at a time when they were not yet appreciated. Durand-Ruel first encountered key Impressionist painters in the early 1870s and guided many of their careers for decades. A passionate advocate of the Impressionists, he established personal ties with these artists and developed new markets for them by opening branches of his Paris gallery in London, Brussels, and New York. Featuring essays by leading scholars, this handsome volume provides a biography of the man and the trajectory of his career. It also examines his relationships with artists and buyers and his groundbreaking business practices, such as embracing the idea of the solo show, publishing art reviews, and paying artists stipends - often at great financial risk and personal cost to himself. Illustrated with archival documents, historic photographs, and paintings by artists such as Edgar Degas, Edouard Manet, Claude Monet, and Pierre-Auguste Renoir, among others, this major contribution to the study of art and commerce transforms our understanding of the development of Impressionism. Hardcover, 304 pages

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