Beginning in the late 1840s, Gustave Courbet established himself as the leading figure in French Realism. Dedicated to truth, Courbet insisted on painting the reality of the world around him, in a realistic way. Setting an example with his Pavilion of Realism exhibition of 1855, Courbet painted images of his own world from his own perspective while also addressing the truth of the painting materials used. This paper will trace the development of Courbet’s direct and unique style and how he confronted the modern world he lived in as well as his impact on a generation of artists and his skill at self-promotion and propaganda.
Katherine E. Zoraster is an Art Historian and an Adjunct Instructor of Art History at several local colleges. She graduated with a double major in English Literature and Art History in 1998 from the University of California, Los Angeles. Following several years of working and traveling, she graduated with a Master’s Degree with Distinction in Art History from the California State University at Northridge in 2005 and immediately began her career teaching at CSUN and Moorpark College. Having taught at several colleges, she is currently established as an Adjunct Professor of Art History at Moorpark College and an Art History Instructor for the full-time program at the Los Angeles Academy of Figurative Arts. In addition, she is teaching a variety of different courses through the Osher Lifelong Learning Institute through UCLA Extension and California State University at Channel Islands.