20TH CENTURY MOVEMENTS

PUBLISHER
The Museum of Modern Art, New York

BOOK FORMAT
Clth, 9 x 10.5 in. / 256 pgs / 228 color.

PUBLISHING STATUS
Pub Date
Active

DISTRIBUTION
D.A.P. Exclusive
Catalog: SPRING 2020 p. 23   

PRODUCT DETAILS
ISBN 9781633451018 TRADE
List Price: $65.00 CDN $92.00

AVAILABILITY
In stock

EXHIBITION SCHEDULE

New York, NY
The Museum of Modern Art, 03/22/20–07/25/20

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THE MUSEUM OF MODERN ART, NEW YORK

Félix Fénéon: The Anarchist and the Avant-Garde

Edited with text by Starr Figura, Isabelle Cahn, Philippe Peltier. Text by Cécile Bargues, Yaelle Biro, Anna Blaha, Megan Fontanella, Claudine Grammont, Joan U. Halperin, Charlotte Hellman, Béatrice Joyeux-Prunel, Patricia Leighten, Léa Saint-Raymond, Élodie Vaudry, Marnin Young.

Featured image is reproduced from 'Félix Fénéon: The Anarchist and the Avant-Garde.'

The story of French impresario, dandy and anarchist Félix Fénéon’s extraordinary influence on early modernism

“It would not be a commonplace portrait at all, but a carefully composed picture, with very carefully arranged colors and lines. A rhythmic and angular pose. A decorative Félix, entering with his hat or a flower in his hand.” With these words, in 1890, Paul Signac described to Félix Fénéon the extraordinary portrait he was dedicating to him. In it, Signac paid homage to Fénéon’s distinctive appearance, his generous but enigmatic personality and his innovative approach to modernism.

Signac’s portrait spotlights a figure who often chose to remain behind the scenes. But Fénéon’s impact—as a writer, dealer, publisher, curator, collector and anarchist—was tremendous. Fénéon helped define the movement known as neoimpressionism, a term he himself coined in the 1880s; he helped launch the careers of Seurat, Signac, Bonnard, Matisse and Modigliani; he was the first editor of the work of Rimbaud and Lautréamont; and he was active in anarchist circles, notoriously so in 1894, following the bombing of a restaurant popular among politicians and financiers, for which he was arrested and acquitted.

Félix Fénéon: The Anarchist and the Avant-Garde accompanies the first exhibition tracing Fénéon’s extraordinary, unsung impact on the development of early modernism, a major international event. The publication traces Fénéon’s career through a selection of major works that Fénéon admired, championed and collected, alongside contemporary letters, documents and photographs, and offers a long-overdue celebration of this singular, catalytic figure in art history.

In the late 19th and early 20th centuries, in an age of revolutionary change, French polymath Félix Fénéon (1861–1944) was at the center of Paris’ literary, artistic and anarchist circles. His Novels in Three Lines was translated by Luc Sante and published in 2007.


Featured image is reproduced from 'Félix Fénéon: The Anarchist and the Avant-Garde.'

PRAISE AND REVIEWS

Bookforum

Mark Polizzotti

Given the paucity of material in English, 'Félix Fénéon: The Anarchist and the Avant Garde' offers a rare opportunity to broaden our awareness of this polymath.

Financial Times

Ariella Budick

...Celebrates the fascinating Fénéon, a man of refined taste and violent convictions who combined the roles of critic, editor, collector, dealer and anarchist to become one of art history’s most enigmatic heroes.

New Yorker

Peter Schjeldahl

A waterslide into the lore of a staggeringly clever man who epitomizes a heyday of audacities in pell-mell, modernizing Paris. He never wrote a book. He cut a practically invisible figure in public. But, once you’ve made his acquaintance, he may pester any thoughts you have of the era, like something that is glimpsed and then, when you look, isn’t there.

New York Review of Books

Jed Perl

[Fénéon] was from the first an enigma, and the enigma only deepens when we consider that this art critic, literary editor, prose writer of distinction, and successful promoter of avant-garde artists at an important Parisian gallery was also an anarchist who almost certainly planted a bomb that was mean to kill people.

Hyperallergic

David Carrier

Gathers together a great deal of the art Fénéon admired (and, often, collected), along with new essays by numerous scholars, including good essays on his political activities, his work as an art dealer, and his personal collection.

New York Times

Roberta Smith

An exemplary show devoted to an essential figure who multitasked his way through the aesthetic and political ferment of Belle Époque Paris

New Criterion

Karen Wilkin

A first-rate, informative catalogue with contributions by the curators and other scholars that tell us an enormous amount about the man, his various careers, affiliations, collections, predilections, and relationships with artists. It’s the next best thing to sitting beside Fénéon at a dinner.

New York Times

Roberta Smith

This unusual exhibition was devoted not to an artist, but to a workaholic polymath: an anarchist. art critic, publisher, editor, collector and art dealer. He was an important early admirer of the Pointillist Georges Seurat and also of African sculpture. This catalog examines the facets of his many activities, one readable essay at a time. The result is an up-close portrait of the overlapping cultural spheres of fin de siècle Paris, seen from a new and telling perspective.

Finalist for the Association of American Publishers's Professional and Scholarly Excellence (PROSE) Award

Félix Fénéon: The Anarchist and the Avant-Garde

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