Gustave Caillebotte (1848-1894), the son of a wealthy businessman, is perhaps best known as the painter who organised and funded several of the groundbreaking exhibitions of the Impressionist painters, collected their works, and ensured the Impressionists' presence in the French national museums by bequeathing his own personal collection. Trained at the Ecole des Beaux-Arts and sharing artistic sympathies with his renegade friends, Caillebotte painted a series of extraordinary pictures inspired by the look and feel of modern Paris that also grappled with his own place in the Parisian art scene.
Michael Marrinan's ambitious study draws upon new documents and establishes compelling connections between Caillebotte's painting and literature, commerce, and technology. It offers new ways of thinking about Paris and its changing development in the nineteenth century, exploring the cultural context of Parisian bachelor life and revealing layers of meaning in upscale privilege ranging from haute cuisine to sport and relaxation. Marrinan has written what is sure to be a
central text for the study of nineteenth-century art and culture.
Michael Marrinan is professor emeritus at Stanford University. He is the coauthor of The Culture of Diagram (2010) and the author of Romantic Paris (2009) and Painting Politics for Louis-Philippe (1988).