Napoléon ? Encore !
For two centuries, the figure of Napoleon dominated European history, but also the general perception that people could have of it, not only in France but also in the rest of the world. Genius for some, ogre for others, Napoleon was the subject and object of hundreds of thousands of images, works of art, books and films, often committed, which have left a lasting mark on history. of art and culture. Social and political transformations may have lessened its explicit place in contemporary thought, but this remains alive because, beyond any value judgment, it has shaped a world of which we are, consciously or not, positively. or negatively, the heirs.
This book allows us to understand and see what artists of today, from very different countries, can do with this heritage and this personality in every way exceptional, with a distance undoubtedly greater than that of previous generations, but with a perhaps redoubled acuity.
Some works present either a direct relationship with the iconography of Bonaparte (Laurent Grasso, Hervé Ingrand, Peter Saul, Julian Schnabel, Georges Tony Stoll, Yan Pei-Ming) and with the Napoleonic events (Fabrice Hyber, Kapwani Kiwanga, Alexander Kluge, Yan Morvan, Pavel Pepperstein), or a more oblique relationship to the Napoleonic figure and its heritage (Adel Abdessemed, Marina Abramovic, Art & Language, Stéphane Calais, Hélène Delprat, Damien Deroubaix, Edgar Sarin, Assan Smati). The visual arts are thus questioned by some fundamental themes of a now necessarily plural history, such as genius, exemplarity, conquest, virility, insularity, the racial question, national identity, etc.