French Art and Architecture

French Art and Architecture
  • French artists
  • Romanesque French Art
  • Gothic Art
  • Renaissance Art
  • Baroque Art
  • 18th Century Art
  • 19th Century Art
  • 20th Century Art

18th Century Art in France

Art continued to be closely linked to politics at the time; therefore the aesthetic styles were actually named after the political periods, namely, the régence style, the Louis period styles and the Directoire style. When Louis XV came into power, the monumentality and pompous grandeur of the Baroque style were gradually replaced by a lighter and more refined and animated style typical of the Rococo. The greatest exponent of this new style was J. A. Watteau. Jean François de Troy, François Boucher and Jean-Honoré Fragonard painted at a later time, using a distinct decorative and sensuous style of painting. Gracefulness and delicacy were the main features in other fields of art too, such as sculptures, bronze work and porcelains.

As the 18th century drew to a close, the frivolous style of court art began to grow outmoded and a new artistic movement, known as the neoclassical style, began taking shape. This was a more austere, emotionally cool style and began spreading across Europe.