Boucher

Georges Brunel, Author Vendome Press $60 (304p) ISBN 978-0-86565-064-0
Francois Boucher's ethereal universe of juicy cupids, Venuses, saucy milkmaids and overvoluptuous nudes seems the height of the French Rococo style. Yet Brunel maintains that Louis XV's court painter never willingly took on mythological or historical themes and, furthermore, that he was essentially a Parisian craftsman steeped in the popular culture of decorators, engravers and cabinetmakers. Instead of Boucher the libertine, linked to Madame de Pompadour, Brunel gives us a man of simple tastes, a hard worker and good father. The author's revisionist interpretation of Boucher's art is as singular and as unconvincing as his whitewashing of the artist's personality. Keeper of Works of Art in the churches of Paris, Brunel examines Boucher's tapestries, theater sets, engravings, porcelain and book illustration. With 60 plates in color and 240 black-and-white reproductions, this weighty tome surveys Boucher's enchanted world of pure spectacle. (October)
Reviewed on: 09/01/1987
Release date: 09/01/1987
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