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Comment: Chicago; University Of Chicago Press; 2012; 9.10 X 6.60 X 1.40 inches; Cloth; Fine in Fine dust jacket; 401 Pages
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The Brush and the Pen: Odilon Redon and Literature Hardcover – January 5, 2012


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Editorial Reviews

Review

“Gamboni combines the skills of the philologist and sociologist, the iconographer and literary historian, the connoisseur and semiotician. His La plume et le pinceau was a fresh and formidable intervention when it first appeared in 1989, but is even more so now, translated and extensively revised. He has taken account of an intervening generation of archival discovery and critical scholarship to expose an artist who sought to construct for himself a myth of autochthony. In exposing that myth, Gamboni has revealed the historical and cultural origins of one of the least understood symbolists, while bringing to light the close but often conflictual relationship between artistic and literary modernism.”

(Stephen Eisenman, Northwestern University)

“Interest in the work of Odilon Redon has never been stronger than at the present time. Gamboni’s splendid study is the fruit of many years’ consideration of Redon’s diversified and distinctive career, which it situates in the broader context of word and image studies. Indeed, the book can be regarded as a model of how to set the theoretical issues involved in this field within a highly detailed and convincing historical framework.”

(Stephen Bann, University of Bristol)

“The translation of Gamboni’s groundbreaking study of Redon is long overdue. When the French version appeared in 1989 it transformed our understanding of Redon, notably the crucial problematic of word-image relations in his work and the place of this in the cultural field of the late nineteenth century. Now revised and updated in the light of recent scholarship, The Brush and the Pen maintains its central place in contemporary debates about fin-de-siècle art, literature, criticism, and institutions. This is a major work of scholarship on one of our most interesting and complex artist-writers, carried out with historical, theoretical, and critical acumen and interpretive insight.”

(Mich�le Hannoosh, University of Michigan Michele Hannoosh, University of Michigan)

 “Gamboni’s study . . . expertly dissected the tensions and the connections between the twin creative activities of literature and art in Redon’s career. . . . [It] remains a major critical achievement.” 
(Times Literary Supplement)

“Gamboni has succeeded in writing a compelling, sensitive, and enlightening study of an artist whose work is mysterious and difficult to interpret and whose late writings have given scholars a misleading impression of his intellectual development. . . . This important volume will immediately become a standard reference on the artist.”
(H-France Review)

About the Author

Dario Gamboni is professor of the history of art (modern and contemporary) at the University of Geneva. He is the author of many books in French and English and has published articles in a wide range of journals, including Art Bulletin and Cabinet. Mary Whittall was a professional translator living in England. Among her translations are Roland Recht’s Believing and Seeing: The Art of Gothic Cathedrals, also published by the University of Chicago Press.

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