This opulent and authoritative volume, a companion to Abbeville's successful Biedermeier, provides the first significant general presentation of the French Empire style and its profound impact on Europe and America.
Reaching its height in France during the rule of Napoleon Bonaparte, "Empire" represents the late development of a neoclassicism that had held sway over Europe since the mid 18th century. Under Napoleon's extraordinary political and aesthetic influence, the style spread throughout the Continent and the United States during the early 19th century and came to embody the glory of the French Empire.
Illustrated with a superb collection of paintings, drawings, watercolours, and 150 full-colour photographs of projects in France, Italy, Germany, Great Britain, Russia, Spain, Sweden, and the United States Madelaine Deschamps' gracefully written text discusses Empire interior, decorative arts, architecture, gardens, painting, sculpture, music, literature, and lifestyle within the political and economic context that so strongly influenced the development and popularity of the style. Napoleon's political hegemony may have ended long ago, but the style he fostered has remained of enduring interest among architects and designers.
"Deschamps, a Parisian writer, focuses here on France and the arts of the French empire under Napoleon, with a 40-page coda on styles elsewhere in Europe and America.... This is a sumptuous survey of the Napoleonic style for general readers." -- Jack Perry Brown, Art Inst. of Chicago
About the Author
Madeleine Deschamps has a doctorate in art history and has taught at the Sorbonne, at the cole du Louvre, at Parsons School of Design in Paris, and in American university programs. For eight years she was curator of the American Center in Paris and then became an editor at Editions Flammarion. A specialist on American art and on the decorative arts, she is author of La Peinture Américaine, les mythes et la matière (1981) and contributed to L'Art de Vivre (1989). She also writes for L'Oeil, Art Press, and Condé Nast publications, and she works with an association of antique dealers in Paris, where she lives.