In the early 1870s, a small group of renegade artists, headed by Edouard Manet and Auguste Renoir, redefined the nature of society portraiture. They inspired a new generation of painters, such as Theo van Rysselberghe, Kees van Dongen, Amedeo Modigliani, and Gustave Klimt to introduce an increasingly diverse and innovative range of styles into the portraiture genre. However, the grand tradition of society portraiture was not abandoned, and continued surviving in the grandiose creations of Sir John Everett Millais, John Singer Sargent, Giovanni Boldini, Valentin Serov, and Philip de Laszlo.
EUGENE BARILO VON REISBERG is a writer, researcher, and art consultant. He is an internationally acknowledged authority on Franz Xaver Winterhalter, the 19th century elite portrait specialist, and he is currently completing a doctoral thesis on the artist at the University of Melbourne.
See also Eugene Barilo von Reisberg’s other lecture QUEEN VICTORIA'S MAHARAJAH | The many lives of Duleep Singh above.
Giovanni Boldini (1842-1931), Portrait of Consuelo, Duchess of Marlborough, with Her Son, Lord Ivor Spencer-Churchill, 1906, The Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York, NY, gift of Consuelo Vanderbilt Balsan, 1946 (47.71)