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The Paris Visual Académie

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Chapter Summary

This chapter demonstrates that the narrative painters who became accademici in Italy and academiciens in Paris share a unique status. They are the first practitioners of any activity, whether occupational or avocational, to endeavor methodically to link advanced liberal instruction to the delivery of expert occupational services believed universally at the time to be socio-culturally consequential. Visual academiciens navigate the first sustained professionalism project in Western history utterly blind. For instance, the three advanced university Faculties of the day - Divinity, Physic and Law - cannot possibly provide them with any model, let alone an ideology capable of guiding or orienting a professionalism project. Visual académies are one type of specialized academy, the two other major types being literary and experimentalist. The ultimate end of Académie instruction is narrative painting and sculpture, the genre that most distinguishes brevetaires and now academiciens from maitrisie.

Keywords: Paris; professionalism project; visual académie



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