Monday Lectures

31 May 2021

Napoleon and his Artists: From Glory to Pathos

Part 2 with Chris Boïcos

Jean-Pierre-Marie Jazet (Paris, 1788 – Yerres, 1871), Napoleon Emerging From his tomb [Allegory of the Transfer of Napoleon’s Mortal Remains from St Helena to Paris], 1840

France is this year commemorating the bicentenary of Napoleon’s death in exile in St Helena. There is no other historical figure who was painted and sculpted as much and in so many guises as Napoleon Bonaparte.

 

Our lecture will explore the most significant depictions of the wily Corsican who ended up conquering Europe. This concluding part of our lecture will concentrate on images of Napoleon after his defeat and death and outline the evolution of the Napoleonic cult in art right up to the early 20th century. Horace Vernet, Paul Delaroche, Ernest Meissonier, Jean-Léon Gerôme and Édouard Detaille are some of the principal artists whose work we will be examining.

Meissonier, Napoleon I in 1814, 1862, Walters Art Museum, Baltimore



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