HSC VISUAL ARTS 2013 STUDENT NAME:
HSC ASSESSMENT TASK 2: EDUARD MANET.
DATE ISSUED: FRI APRIL 12
DATE DUE: MON MAY 6 @ 9AM
VALUE: 15% OF TOTAL INTERNAL ASSESSMENT MARK
This task explores the work of Eduard Manet through images and written pieces about the artist, his work, his audience and his world. The aim is to help students focus on this significant artist. It also tests students’ skills on looking, thinking and writing about art. Thirdly it tests students’ understanding of the Frames / Conceptual Framework. Lastly it exposes students to basic library procedures.
This handout contains 3 articles + questions + Library Exercise. There are questions at the end of each article.
John McDonald article: 1 question;
Museum of Modern Art (MoMA) New York article: 5 questions;
Advice regarding Library Exercise.
Read each question carefully. Note some questions have several parts. You must answer very specific things. (This is similar to your HSC Exam.) You will lose marks if you do not answer what is asked of you, no matter how brilliant your answer may be.
PRESENTING YOUR WORK:
Staple your library exercise to this document. Include your name on the document. Don’t use paper clips or plastic sleeves.
QUESTIONS ABOUT THE TASK?
If there is something you don’t understand, you are welcome to contact me to discuss it at any time (including through the holidays.) Best to txt me and I’ll ring you back. DO NOT wait till the night before your task is due to contact me.
If you do not hand work in at the scheduled time and fail to contact Jan Eades or me personally within 24 hours of this time, you will receive a zero mark for this task.
If you have illness or issues that mean you anticipate you won’t be able to submit on time, you must contact me beforehand to discuss. Asking another student to speak to me does not count.
(Relates to Syllabus Outcomes H7-H10. Syllabus can be accessed on Wiki Site or Board of Studies: http://www.boardofstudies.nsw.edu.au/syllabus_hsc/visual-arts.html#syllabus)
END OF ADVICE. ARTICLES COMMENCE ON FOLLOWING PAGE
JOHN MCDONALD http://johnmcdonald.net.au/2011/manet/
Published in the Sydney Morning Herald, June 25, 2011
Manet: The Man Who Invented Modernity, Musée d’Orsay, Paris, until 3 July
…We love to imagine artists such as Manet as Romantic geniuses, angrily rejecting the past as they forge a new kind of painting, regardless of the hostility of the critics and the masses. But this is a caricature of the truth: the great artists pay their dues like everyone else. Their innovations do not arrive like bolts of lightning…
…A dandy from a well-off background, whose father was a judge, Manet rebelled against almost all the elements of traditional painting. The use of space in his pictures disrupts the carefully thought-out rules of perspective that had ruled since the time of the Renaissance. In Manet’s works, most notably in a large canvas such as The Execution of Maximilian (1868), the space is compressed and flattened…
…He is equally disdainful of the convention that paintings must be illuminated by one consistent light source. In works such as Dejeuner sur l’herbe [Luncheon on the Grass], light is used for dramatic effect, throwing the naked body of the seated woman into striking relief. In many works it seems as if there are multiple or alternative sources of light.
Perhaps Manet’s most significant innovation is the way he refuses to treat the figures in a painting as objects that arrange themselves passively for the viewer’s delectation.* In Olympia (1863), to give but the most notorious example, the modern courtesan** – short and stocky, with black choker and shoes to accentuate her nudity – stares out at us brazenly. Unabashed by her nakedness, she dares the viewer to be the first one to lower his (undoubtedly “his”) eyes.
The confrontational nature of Olympia is accentuated by the way light falls full flush upon the reclining figure, as if from a doorway the viewer has just flung open. We are taken by surprise, implicated in the scene beyond the point of no return.
*Delectation: pleasure, satisfaction.
** Courtesan: offering sex to the rich and powerful in exchange for accommodation or being kept as a mistress. Often better treated than a simple sex-worker on the street.
END OF ARTICLE.
QUESTION ON MCDONALD ARTICLE
McDonald notes that Manet populates his paintings with figures that don’t ‘arrange themselves passively for the viewer’s delectation’. This is a significant change to how figures, especially nudes, have been painted previously.
We know Manet was influenced by the 16th century Master, Titian and based his Luncheon on the Grass on Titian’s work (Plate 2.) Bearing in mind McDonald’s comments, compare the poses of the nudes in Plates 1 & 2, as well as the way the figures have been described.
Plate 1: Manet, Luncheon on the Grass
(previously called Le Bain, the Bath.) 1862–1863, oil on canvas, 208 × 265 cm.
Plate 2: Titian (Italy, 1490 – 1576) Pastoral Concert, c. 1509, oil on canvas, 105 cm × 137 cm
END OF QUESTIONS ON THIS ARTICLE.
Nathaniel Harris, The Paintings of Manet. London: Hamlyn Publishing Group Ltd, 1989.
Excerpt starting p. 32
Plate 1: Manet, Music in the Tuileries Gardens, c.1862, oil on canvas, 76 x 118 cm
“Music in the Tuileries Gardens”…is modern in spirit as well as subject, and original in conception and execution. The fashionable crowd, casually assembled to hear an open-air concert, was entirely of its time and place. It is, collectively, the ‘hero’ of the painting, not any one figure or group and the fact is emphasised by the composition which sets the eye moving restlessly about – like the crowd itself.
The composition is noticeably flattened – that is, there is little sense of depth – since Manet preferred to strengthen the impact of his painting by bringing all its elements forward, close to the front of the imaginary picture space.
He used this technique regularly, with the result that he was to be just as regularly accused of incompetence in his handling of perspective. Later, however his example was to be followed by other great masters (Cezanne for instance, and Matisse) who valued the unity of the picture surface more highly than literal, ‘photograhic’ realism.
From this time on  modern subjects were of decisive importance in Manet’s development, although another two or three years went by before his earlier mixture of Spanish, low-life and old-master-imitation works virtually disappeared.
END OF EXCERPT.
QUESTIONS ON HARRIS ARTICLE.
According to Harris, what is this painting about? _______________________________________
Do you agree or disagree? Give a reason for your answer.
Is this a History Painting? Why or why not?
What can we say about the treatment of the figures in this work, specifically the modelling?
Although there is some perspective used (the figures do diminish as they recede into space) the painting is pretty flat. There is no perspective emphasised. There is very little atmospheric perspective at all.
This feature of Manet’s painting was a new approach and was very influential. What effect does this flattening have on how we view the work? What does it make us focus on?
END OF QUESTIONS ON THIS ARTICLE
MUSEUM OF MODERN ART N.Y. (MoMA)
MANET AND THE EXECUTION OF MAXIMILIAN: NOV 5 2006 – JAN 29 2007
Between 1867 and 1869, Eduard Manet completed a series of compositions depicting the execution of Emperor Maximilian of Mexico. Maximilian had been installed in power in Mexico by Napoleon III of France in an attempt to recover unpaid debts and establish a European presence there. This endeavour failed miserably, ending with the execution of Maximilian and two of his generals by firing squad on June 19, 1867.
The execution was by order of Benito Juárez, who had been displaced as president when the French took control of Mexico.
News of the execution reached Paris on July 1, and Manet, a republican ideologically opposed to Napoleon’s policies, set to work almost immediately. Informed by a steady stream of written and graphic accounts of the event, he produced three large paintings, an oil sketch, and a lithograph on the subject.
Due to the political content of these works, there was no opportunity for Manet to display them in Paris under Napoleon III. Only the final, largest painting was exhibited during the artist’s lifetime, when a friend arranged to take the work to New York and Boston in 1879.
The painting attracted little attention, however, and this and Manet’s other compositions on the subject remained largely unknown until the early twentieth century.
Manet and the Execution of Maximilian unites these five works for the first time in the United States and features selected additional works that illuminate the fascinating development of this series.
END OF ARTICLE
Plate 1. Execution of Maximilian, 1867, oil on canvas, 196 x 230cm
Plate 2. Execution of Maximilian, 1868-9, lithograph, 34 x 44cm.
Plate 3. Execution of Maximilian, 1868-9, oil on canvas, 252 x 302cm.
Manet worked on these paintings and prints, and several more, over the course of a couple of years. In his choice of composition, he was influenced by the Spanish painter Francisco Goya, specifically a work called Third of May 1808. This image also depicts an execution, this time by French soldiers of Spanish prisoners 60 years earlier than the Mexican event.
Plate 4: Francisco Goya (Spanish, 1746 – 1828) Third of May 1808, 1814, oil on canvas, 268 x 347cm
QUESTIONS ON MoMA ARTICLE
What can you say about both Manet’s French audience and his American audience during the artist’s lifetime?
2. Using the Cultural Frame, what can you say about Manet’s choice of subject? (1 mark.)
3. Look at Plate 3 & Plate 4.
Using the Subjective Frame what can we say about the images? Is there a difference between the atmosphere or mood that has been created by each artist? If so, what is it? Can you see how the artist has created this feeling? (3 marks)
4. There is a development of the composition across the 3 Manet images. (Plates 1, 2, & 3) What can you say about the changes between the three images? Aim for 3 separate differences or developments you can see. (1 mark each.)
Say which one you feel works best, and why (1 mark.)(Total 4 marks.)
Compare Plates 3 and 4. Consider and say something about each aspect listed below, for each
plate. (1 mark each, total 5 marks.)
Tonal variation; colour
Pose & positioning of figures
Use of space and perspective
Use of pattern and repetition.
END OF QUESTIONS FOR THIS ARTICLE.
You will need a current Student Card to complete this exercise, with a small amount of money on it to do some colour copying at the Library.
NB: Library staff are very pleased to assist you if you don’t know how to start.
Access the Library Catalogue. (If you don’t know how, ask a Librarian.)
Enter the search-term ‘Manet.’ Restrict your search to our Library ( it’s listed as Sutherland College Gymea Campus). You will come up with a list of books.
Using the Call-Numbers listed on the screen, go and locate a book on Manet. If you are getting confused ask a Librarian.
Choose any book on Manet.
Find an image by Manet that you like, that HAS NOT been featured in this Assessment Task, or in our PowerPoints.
(To make things easier for you, below is a list of the images we have already used.)
Luncheon on the Grass (Dejeuner sur l’herbe)
The Execution of Maximilian
Music in the Tuileries Gardens
The Absinthe Drinker
Get a colour photocopy of the image using the photocopiers in the library. Ask a librarian if need be. You will need to use your Student Card to pay for this (it’s pretty cheap though.) GOOGLE IS NOT TO BE USED AT ANY POINT IN THIS EXERCISE. The whole point is to practice accessing books yourself.
Once you have a colour photocopy of your image, you need to write a citation at the bottom (or on the back of the page) with: Title, year, media, size (if that is available). (2 marks)
You also need to note the following details of the book you chose:
Title of book
Author (or editor)
Year of publication (this is in the first couple of pages of the book.)
Name of publisher (“)
Call number of book (this is on the spine of the book.)
The page of the book where the image is.
I should then be able to go straight to the right book and the right page and find the image you’ve printed. (2 marks.)
Finally, I want you to tell me why you chose this image, and discuss the type of world you think the artist is describing with that particular work. ( 1 mark)
Put your name on this page. Staple it to this document.
HSC Assessment Task 2 issue Moira Kirkwood Version number 1 1page
Disclaimer: Printed copies of this document are regarded as uncontrolled. Please check http://sitwww.tafensw.edu.au/ to ensure this is the latest version