Jean-Jacques Henner, an Old-Fashioned Radical?

THE DAILY PIC: He painted wildly in 1865–and then got upstaged by Impressionism

Reclining Nymph

Reclining Nymph

THE DAILY PIC (#1516): This little painting of a reclining nymph was painted around 1865 by the French artist Jean-Jacques Henner, and it now lives in the permanent collection of the Portland Art Museum. (I’m Pic-ing that museum again today, just in case some millionaire is making a special trip to Oregon to see the  Zig Jackson image I discussed yesterday. I thought I’d help justify the cost of the flight by giving two pictures for it to be spread across.)

This Henner is so gorgeously, daringly painted that I have a feeling it would have counted as utterly radical in its day – before Henner’s style got upstaged by the Impressionists.

I think it’s just as exciting to understand the range of moves that counted as cutting edge in the past as to stick with the Modernist “march of progress” that still floats in the back of our minds and tastes.

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