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Noir: The Romance of Black in 19th-Century French Drawings and Prints

Edited by Lee Hendrix
With contributions by Lee Hendrix, Cynthia Burlingham, Laurel Garber, Timothy David Mayhew, Michelle Sullivan, and Nancy Yocco

Due to the technological advances of the nineteenth century, an abundance of black drawing media exploded onto the market. Charcoal, conte crayon, and fabricated black chalks and crayons; fixatives; various papers; and many lifting devices gave rise to an unprecedented amount of experimentation. Indeed, innovation became the rule, as artists developed their own unique — and often experimental — processes. The exploration of black media in drawing is inextricably bound up with the exploration of black in prints, and this volume presents an integrated study that rises above specialization in one over the other.

brings together such diverse artists as Francisco de Goya, Maxime Lalanne, Gustave Courbet, Odilon Redon, and Georges Seurat and explores their inventive works on paper. Sidelining labels like “conservative” or “avant-garde,” the essays in this book employ all the tools that art history and modern conservation have given us, inviting the reader to look more broadly at the artists’ methods and materials.

This volume accompanied an eponymous exhibition on view at the J. Paul Getty Museum February 9 to May 15, 2016.

Lee Hendrix is former senior curator of drawings at the J. Paul Getty Museum, where Nancy Yocco is senior paper conservator and where Laurel Garber and Michelle Sullivan were both graduate interns. Cynthia Burlingham is deputy director at the Hammer Museum. Timothy David Mayhew is an artist and scientist at the Atelier Cedar Ridge in New Mexico.

“[A] groundbreaking publication”
Fine Art Connoisseur

184 pages
9 1/2 x 11 inches
125 color illustrations
ISBN 978-1-60606-482-5

Getty Publications
Imprint: J. Paul Getty Museum