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2019 Summer Sunday Lecture Series: Celebrating the Old Master Collections of the National Gallery of Art: French Art of the 18th Century

David Gariff, senior lecturer, National Gallery of Art

The 2019 Summer Sunday Lecture Series focuses on the outstanding collections of old master paintings in the National Gallery of Art, and also includes a discussion of the extraordinary American furniture from the Kaufman Collection, currently on view on the ground floor of the West Building. Over the decades, appreciation of French eighteenth-century art has fluctuated between preference for the alluring decorative canvases of rococo artists such as François Boucher and Jean-Honoré Fragonard to admiration for the sober neoclassicism championed by Jacques-Louis David and his pupils. In this final lecture in the series, presented on August 25, David Gariff, senior lecturer, surveys the history of French art in the eighteenth century from the time of Louis XIV to the French Revolution. In addition to works by Boucher, Fragonard, and David, scenes of daily life by Antoine Watteau, Jean-Siméon Chardin, and Jean-Baptiste Greuze are discussed.