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Favourite Napoleonic Prints

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Favourite Napoleonic Prints

Postby brimage » June 13th, 2011, 5:47 am

Hi guys

Cathey and I have rather a large quantity of Napoleonic prints; so many that we have to rotate them on the walls. This is one of my favourites “Sergeant Charles Ewart taking the French Eagle “. I was wondering what some of our other members favourites might be. Sorry about the picture hard to take on a wall through the old glass.

Cheers Rex
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Re: Favourite Napoleonic Prints

Postby DavidB » June 14th, 2011, 10:32 pm

Great image Rex, who's the artist of that particular one?

In the context of the French, I've always liked de Myrbach's classic prints. Familiar of course as illustrations in countless books, including the Napoleonic Source Book for example.
Some of his here:
http://www.art.co.uk/gallery/id--a62514 ... prints.htm
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Re: Favourite Napoleonic Prints

Postby DavidB » June 14th, 2011, 10:43 pm

Also Meissonier's famous image of Napoleon on campaign in 1814 - fantastic!
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:Meiss ... France.jpg
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Re: Favourite Napoleonic Prints

Postby brimage » June 15th, 2011, 11:05 am

Hi David,

Sorrry no name visible on the print must be under the mount. Had a chance to buy the other print you mentioned as your favourtie some years ago, didn't we are idots.

Cheers Rex
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Re: Favourite Napoleonic Prints

Postby brimage » June 15th, 2011, 11:15 am

Hi David, another print, sorry about the picture quality the glass is a real problem. This one is by Eugene Chaperon in 1905 called Waterloo, the boys look a tad dishevelled.

Cheers Rex
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Re: Favourite Napoleonic Prints

Postby FBC-Elvas, Portugal » May 17th, 2014, 3:46 pm

DavidB wrote:Also Meissonier's famous image of Napoleon on campaign in 1814 - fantastic!
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:Meiss ... France.jpg

Ernest Meissonier is famous for his military paintings, especially his care for detail and the realism of his uniforms. One of his most famous paintings, 1814, the French Campaign, singlehandedly revolutionised the genre of war painting. There he concentrates not on the action and the fighting but rather on the figures depicted and the emotion.

By illustrating the Emperor retreating towards Soissons after the defeat at the battle of Laon (9/10 March) in a modestly sized painting (76.5 cm high, 51.5 cm wide), Meissonier underlines the dramatic intensity of this episode in the French Campaign. The traditional representation of an army on the move - here on the diagonal of the painting - is totally transformed and given a personal and human profundity. The figure of Emperor (whose imminent fall is almost palpable) literally merges into those of his men, from his General Staff (Ney, Berthier and Flahaut at the front, with Ney, Drouot and Gourgaud behind on his left) to the last, almost imperceptible soldier in the long line which stretches out towards the horizon and the vanishing point of the painting. The colours are those of a muddy thaw, matched by the low and threatening sky, all combining to give an atmosphere of heaviness. Meissonier, as a man of the 1860s, shows us a demoralised army on a slippery mud-spattered path and we know that the French Campaign cannot have had a positive outcome.

Painted for the fiftieth anniversary of the battle it commemorates, this work was immediately exhibited at the Salon of French artists in 1864. It was so successful that it was then put on show at the Great Exhibition in Paris in 1867. That same year, Ernest Meissonier, officer of the Légion d'Honneur since 1856, was promoted to ‘commandeur' of the Légion d'Honneur.

The fame of the 1814 Campaign was so immediate that the painting was bought just after the Great Exhibition in 1867. It finally ended up in the collection of Alfred Chauchard, a French art collector from the end of the 19th century. Chauchard was one of the first “friends of the Louvre” and when he died he left many works to the national museum, including this famous Meissonier painting, which is now on show at the Musée d'Orsay.

source: http://www.napoleon.org/en/essential_na ... 484453.asp

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Re: Favourite Napoleonic Prints

Postby Josh&Historyland » May 17th, 2014, 3:57 pm

I love this style of painting, Meissonier, Detaille and De Neuville were masters of it. It took a while for British artists like Butler, Wollen and Beadle to catch on to it. And only Beadle managed to emulate Meissonier's underlining of the action at hand, an almost gentle far off look at war, so you have to look closely to see the pain and suffering, yet on its whole breathing out the exhaustion and fatigue of conflict.

http://www.military-art.com/mall/images/800s/dhm0092.jpg

In fact most of Beadle's work is like that, the crossing of the Bidassoa is a good example of the campaign view of war, even his Waterloo pieces, like The Guard advancing or the salute before the battle, Wellington at Quatre Bras, show the view behind the action, as if a photographer had just snapped a sudden moment.

Meissonier's is very like that, as if a photo jounalist had been wondering along the flank of a marching coloumn and suddenly Napoleon's staff rides past, he steps aside, sees the deep concentration in his face, the famous stare captured excellently here and takes a picture that had it been one, would have been on the front of magazines across the world. That's what gives it the realism, the humanity of it.

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