Monday, November 15, 2010

The Troubadour style

Valentine of Milan weeping for the death of her husband Louis of Orléans by François Fleury-Richard (c. 1802)

The Troubadour Style is a French style taking its name from medieval troubadours, a French artistic movement across multiple media aiming to regain the idealized romantic atmosphere of the Middle Ages. It can be seen as a reaction against Neoclassicism, which started in the mid 18th century with the rediscovery of Herculaneum in 1738 and Pompeii 1748 by the time of the end of the French Consulate, There was a small group of artist trying to turn away from the Neoclassical style by looking to medieval French Gothic for inspiration. One of the fist patrons of the style was Josephine Bonaparte and Caroline Ferdinande Louise, duchesse de Berry. A comparable phenomenon in the United Kingdom and the USA was the Gothic Revival style.

Some artists and writers by the early 19th century rejected the neo-antique rationalism of the French Revolution and turned towards a perceived glorious Christian past. In painting, the troubadour style was represented by history painting portraying edifying historical episodes, borrowing its smoothness, its minute and illusionistic description of detail, its rendering of fabrics, the intimate character of its familiar scenes and its other technical means from 17th century Dutch painting. The first troubadour painting was presented at the Salon of 1802, under the French Consulate. It was a work by Fleury-Richard, "Valentine of Milan weeping for the death of his wife",

A subject which had come to the artist during a visit to the "musée des monuments français", a museum of French medieval monuments. A tomb from this museum was included in the painting as that of the wife. Thanks to its moving subject matter, the painting was an enormous success - seeing it, David cried "This resembles nothing anyone else has done, it's a new effect of colour; the figure is charming and full of expression, and this green curtain thrown across this window renders the illusion complete". Fleury-Richard's descriptions and those of his contemporaries inform us the light filtered through the window was again filtered by the green curtain. David had judged right, the subject and the technique were new.

The Troubadour Style did not catch on much during the first few years of the 19th century. The oncoming Empire style was too strong. In decorative arts like Paris porcelain, Porcelain forms were purely classical in stile but decorated with Gothic tracery or Troubadour scenes. It would not be a popular full blown style until The Bourbon Restoration. During this period until the 1860's the Troubadour Style influence architecture, the decorative arts, literature and theatre.

1840's Old Paris porcelain Troubadour style clock with a Troubadour

Detail of Old Paris porcelain Troubadour

The Charles X  library has been decorated around 1825 in a Neogothic style, also known as Troubadour style because it is a pastiche of the Gothic. This library, of late 18th century English influence, is a precious testimony of that period announcing the romanticism.

Charles X Troubadour Style Mantel Clock gilt/bronze clock with figure of a woman kneeling on a pillow on the left and a figure of a man standing on the right.

From my collection a Rococo Revival Old Paris porcelain vase with Troubadour scene 1840's   

From my collection a Rococo Revival Old Paris porcelain vase with Troubadour scene 1840's   

French Window Treatment : Valances Style: Troubadour

French room in the Troubadour style

French Troubadour style side chair

From my collection a Empire style Old Paris porcelain vase with Troubadour style decoration 1820

The Death of Leonardo da Vinci in the Troubadour style by Jean-Auguste-Dominique Ingres 1818

A pair of circular French neo gothic cassolettes in patinated and gilded bronze, decorated with a pierced apron, and rests on a squared base underlined by a frieze of foliage. Very good condition. Louis-Philippe Period, Circa: 1840.

A pair of period Empire Old Paris porcelain vases one painted with a money counter the other with Troubadour scene

Pair of vases ("Vase Gothique Fragonard"), 1844

Sèvres Manufactory (French, 1740–present); Decorated by Jacob Meyer-Heine (French, active 1840–73)
Source: Sèvres Manufactory; Jacob Meyer-Heine: Pair of vases ("Vase Gothique Fragonard")

Pair of Classical style Old Paris porcelain vases with Neogothic Troubadour gold gilt tracery Charles X period 1820's

American Gilt-Lacquered Brass Tripodal Five-Light Candelabra, in the "Troubadour" taste, third quarter 19th century

Continental School, early-to-mid 19th c., a group of three good "Style Troubadour" paintings on tin of "Scenes of Lovers", including "The Stolen Kiss", "The Lute Player", and "The Tryst",

Louis-Philippe Gilt-Brass Figural Mantel Clock second quarter 19th century, in the "Troubadour" style, the case surmounted by the figure of a 16th-century lady-of-fashion standing at a dressing table into which is set the circular dial, the lower case with a large mount of a lute-playing putto flanked by, respectively, the trophees of the Arts and Sciences.

A Pair of Charles X Gilt Bronze Five-Light Figural Candelabra , c. 1830, in the Troubadour style, each courtly figure in medieval garb, on a round plinth with gothic moldings above an acanthus support, holding aloft a torchere with foliate scroll branches.

From my collection a pair of Old Paris porcelain Troubadour style figures attributed to Jacob Petit 1840's

New Orleans Saint Louis Cathedral was redesigned in 1850 by French architect J. N. B. de Pouilly in the Troubadour style

No comments:

Post a Comment