Broaching the Subject of Beauty
A look at three paintings from the cusp of the 20th century that make a powerful argument for beauty.
When in 2014 the Getty Museum acquired Édouard Manet’s “Jeanne (Spring)” (1881), it commissioned a three-lecture series and invited the art historian Richard Brettell to be the first speaker. He, in turn, has now expanded his published version of those discussions to deal also with two other late 19th-century paintings in the Getty collection, Paul Gauguin’s still life “Arii matamoe (La fin royale)” (1892) and Paul Cézanne’s “Young Italian Woman at a Table” (1895-1900).
As Brettell notes at the start of his book, On Modern Beauty: Three Paintings by Manet, Gauguin and Cézanne, both ‘modern’ and ‘beauty’ have become highly problematic concepts, in part because of the legitimate concerns of feminists and scholars dealing with gender and colonialism. Click here to continue
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“Villages preserve culture: dress, food and dance are a few examples. As villages grow in population and turn into towns, local cafes make way for large American chains. Handmade leather sandals are discarded for a pair of Western sneakers.
Due to its small size, a village fosters a tight-knit sense of community. Justpeace.org explains the meaning of the African proverb, “It takes a village,” by stating that a sense of community is critical to maintaining a healthy society.
Village members hold a wealth of information regarding their heritage: they know about the ancient traditions, methods of production and the resources of the land. When villages become dispersed or exterminated in times of war, this anthropological knowledge disappears.
Large cities are not as conducive to growing and producing foods such as fruits and vegetables. Villages, on the other hand, usually have ample amounts of land and other resources necessary for growing conditions.” The Importance of Villages by Catherine Capozzi
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