Portrait of Emile Zola (cropped) by Edouard Manet, 1868
Save when you purchase The Intersection of Art and Literature spring series!
The notion that a picture is worth a thousand words is meant to convey the power of imagery. But what of the power of words—if they are personal interpretations of art that mix fact and fiction such as Giorgio Vasari’s Lives, or the writings of Dante and Shakespeare that inspired Auguste Rodin, or Émile Zola’s written defense of his great friend Édouard Manet’s work—and the portrait it inspired.
Explore the alchemy that occurs at the intersection of art and literature in this fascinating Sunday afternoon series with David Gariff, senior lecturer at the National Gallery of Art.
Édouard Manet and Émile Zola: A Portrait of a Friendship
Painter Édouard Manet (1832-1883) was a sensitive and serious student of the literature of his day. Among his friends were the poets Charles Baudelaire, Stéphane Mallarmé, and most importantly, the naturalist and novelist Émile Zola. Manet memorialized Zola in his 1868 portrait of the writer—and his fortunes and reputation became linked with Zola’s through the years. They were kindred spirits, confronting the realities of their times and producing art relevant for the modern age as it began. Their revolutionary creative sensibility inspired 20th-century artists and writers to come.
Recommended Reading: Realism and Tradition in Art 1848-1900, by Linda Nochlin
World Art History Certificate elective: Earn 1/2 credit*
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