Parisian Sketches

Parisian Sketches
Author : Joris-Karl Huysmans
Publisher : SCB Distributors
Total Pages : 200
Release : 2011-02-05
ISBN 10 : 9781907650192
ISBN 13 : 1907650199
Language : EN, FR, DE, ES & NL

"No one, not even Toulouse-Lautrec, was so tireless a tracker of Paris�s genius loci as Huysmans. Like many of his radical contemporaries, he was obsessed by the idea of beauty within the ugliness of back-street Paris, by the thought that the distortions of depravity presented a truer picture of our spiritual nature than conventional religion or revolutionary excess. The excellent introduction to these cameos show how Huysmans saw his art as complementary to the painter�s. As the stories themselves testify, however, the results were not always successful. Compare for example, the sharp impressionistic portrayal of 'A Streetwalker' with the hazy, self-regarding raptures of 'The Overture to Tannhauser', a hyperventilating review characterised by sonorous phrases which pile up and collapse. But his symbolist mode yields as many rockets as damp squibs: 'A Nightmare' is genuinely chilling and oddly exultant. A tale about the wandering Jew is a mini-masterpiece. In this and other pieces, Huysmans begins and ends his tale with the same description - giving the whole the air of a medieval chant." Murrough Obrien in The Independent on Sunday


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