Art-Students and Copyists in the Louvre Gallery, Paris
Regarded as one of the great American Realists of the nineteenth century, Winslow Homer is known primarily for his large body of works in oil and watercolor. However, he also had an early career as a freelance illustrator, making drawings for wood engravings that were reproduced in mass-circulation periodicals such as Harper’s Weekly. In 1998, the Brooklyn Museum received a generous gift of more than 250 wood-engraved illustrations by Homer from Harvey Isbitts.
The Harper’s Weekly issue in which this engraving appeared contained a brief history of the Louvre. The piece was introduced with a reference to Homer’s time in Paris, and the text extolled the Louvre for its invaluable role in aiding aspiring artists. In this drawing Homer concentrated on the growing number of women among the legions of students in Paris. These modern females are shown copying Eugène Delacroix’s The Death of Sardanapolous, 1826, a monumental canvas whose violent imagery was in sharp contrast to the genteel still lifes and dainty watercolors that were generally considered suitable “feminine” subjects and formats. In essence, Homer addressed in this work the revolution in art education for women in the post-Civil War era.
Sheet: 9 3/16 x 13 7/8 in. (23.3 x 35.2 cm)
Frame: 16 3/4 x 22 3/4 x 1 1/2 in. (42.5 x 57.8 x 3.8 cm) (show scale)
Gift of Harvey Isbitts
Page from Harper's Weekly, January 11, 1868, vol. XII, p. 25
This item is not on view
Winslow Homer (American, 1836-1910). Art-Students and Copyists in the Louvre Gallery, Paris, 1868. Wood engraving, Sheet: 9 3/16 x 13 7/8 in. (23.3 x 35.2 cm). Brooklyn Museum, Gift of Harvey Isbitts, 1998.105.102 (Photo: Brooklyn Museum, 1998.105.102_bw.jpg)
overall, 1998.105.102_bw.jpg. Brooklyn Museum photograph
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