A Burial at Ornans and The painter's Studio,
two covertly political paintings
Was Gustave Courbet
a political painter?
Gustave Courbet died ruined and in exile, the unfortunate consequence of his political choices. This civic commitment is not enough to justify his reputation as a committed painter; if there was a political painting, it was only for the initiated.
2. Courbet’s trilogy
Iconographic and formal study, the critical reaction
Shortly after the Revolution of 1848, a revolution in which he did not take part, although he was in Paris at the time, Gustave Courbet painted his famous trilogy and sent it to the Salon in 1850: three peasant pictures that are not, if anything, overtly political.
The Painter’s Studio, a Proudhonian reading
Gustave Courbet applied what he had learnt from Proudhonian anarchism and mutualism to his painting, in particular to Bonjour, Monsieur Courbet. The Painter's Studio can even be interpreted as an illustration of Proudhon's thought.
Readings Jean-Luc MAYAUD, Courbet, l'Enterrement à Ornans : un tombeau pour la République, La Boutique de l'histoire éditions, 1999 T.J. Clark, Image of the People – Gustave Courbet and the 1848 Revolution, Princetone University Press, 1973 Pierre-Joseph Proudhon Du Principe de l'art et de sa destination sociale, Garnier Frères,1865 James Henry Rubin, Realism and Social Vision in Courbet and Proudhon, Princetone University Press, 1980