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The Last Pre-Raphaelite: Edward Burne-Jones and the Victorian Imaginationby Fiona Maccarthy
Synopses & Reviews
While still a student at Oxford, Edward Burne-Jones formed a friendship and made a renunciation that would shape art history. The friendship was with William Morris, with whom he would occupy the social and intellectual center of the era's cult of beauty. The renunciation was of his intention to enter the clergy, when he-together with Morris-vowed to throw over the Church in favor of art. In Fiona MacCarthy's riveting account of Burne-Jones's life, that exchange of faith for art places him at the intersection of the nineteenth century and the Modern, as he leads us forward from Victorian mores and attitudes to the psychological, sexual, and artistic audacity that would characterize the early twentieth century.
In MacCarthy's hands, Burne-Jones emerges as a great visionary painter, a master of mystic reverie, and a pivotal late nineteenth-century cultural and artistic figure. Lavishly illustrated with color plates, The Last Pre-Raphaelite shows that Burne-Jones's influence extended far beyond his own circle to Freudian Vienna and the delicately gilded erotic dream paintings of Gustav Klimt, the Swiss Symbolist painter Ferdinand Hodler, and the young Pablo Picasso and the Catalan painters.
Drawing on extensive research, MacCarthy offers a fresh perspective on the achievement of Burne-Jones, a precursor to the Modern, and tells the dramatic, fascinating story of this peculiarly captivating and elusive man.
Book News Annotation:
This new biography of Edward Burne-Jones, the important late pre-Raphaelite painter and craftsman, examines the great artist's transitional role in the shift from Victorian to modern styles at the turn of the twentieth century. The volume explores the life and work of Burne-Jones and chronicles his relationships with William Morris and other luminaries of the emerging modern art scene in Europe and the UK. The volume includes numerous color plates as well as historical photographs of the artist and his contemporaries. MacCarthy is a fellow of the Royal Society of Literature and is the author of the related work William Morris: A Life for Our Time. Annotation ©2012 Book News, Inc., Portland, OR (booknews.com)
In Fiona MacCarthy's riveting account, Burne-Jones's exchange of faith for art places him at the intersection of the nineteenth century and the Modern, as he leads us forward from Victorian mores and attitudes to the psychological, sexual, and artistic audacity that would characterize the early twentieth century.
A Washington Post Best Book of 2012
2012 James Tait Black Memorial Prize, University of Edinburgh
About the Author
Fiona MacCarthy is one of Britain's most acclaimed biographers, a Fellow of the Royal Society of Literature, and the author of numerous books, including William Morris: A Life for Our Time.
Royal Society of Literature
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