Amuze Art Lecture #8 discusses The Artist’s Studio by Gustave Courbet. This enormous painting (361 cm × 598 cm or 142 in × 235 in) is located in the Musée d'Orsay and is more fully known as The Painter’s Studio: A Real Allegory Summing up Seven Years of My Artistic and Moral Life.
During the 19th century, France, and specifically Paris, was the artistic capital of the world. Until the middle of the century, there were three popular art movements: Academic Art, Neoclassicism, and Romanticism. But Courbet had different ideas than following the conventions of these styles and wanted to paint daily life in an honest way. This eventually became known as Realism. Suddenly, activities from the lower and middle class that were not deemed important were captured on large canvases. It was revolutionary and shocking, but Courbet was a visionary who stuck to his vision and eventually succeeded.
The Artist's Studio is also part of the Highlights Tour of the Musée d'Orsay available in the Amuze app (Android and iOS). In the Musée d'Orsay, it is located next to another masterpiece by Courbet: A Burial at Ornans. And whereas The Artist's Studio is a one-of-a-kind allegorical piece, A Burial at Ornans is true to the Realism style of Courbet.
If you are interested in more two-minute art lectures, you can check out our YouTube channel or click directly on the link to one of our earlier videos: