Marika Takanishi Knowles
MARIKA TAKANISHI KNOWLES is a Junior Fellow at the Harvard Society of Fellows. She studies French art of the 17th, 18th, and 19th centuries.
The French model of painting seemed prescient, because of its insistence that history and passion go hand in hand. Immediately following the election, I looked to French painting as a school of affect, a repository of figures whose emotions provided a series of lessons in how to behave as a historical agent and how to respond to historical events.
| Critics Page
In French art of the 17th, 18th, and 19th centuries, the representation of fashionable garments provided artists with a pretext for visual elaboration: for playing with mediums of oil paint, chalk, pencil, and ink, for getting lost in the pleasure of gestural mark-making.