Modern Art

(Author) (Translator)
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4.9 X 1.1 X 7.7 inches | 0.55 pounds
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About the Author

J.-K. Huysmans (1847-1907) changed from being an obscure author and art critic to one of the most famous authors of his day with the publication of A Rebours (Against Nature) in 1884. A Rebours is a ground-breaking novel which captures the decadent spirit of the day and marks his final break with Zola and naturalism. Dedalus have published 11 books by J.-K. Huysmans, 9 in new translations by Brendan King; Marthe, Parisian Sketches, The Vatard Sisters, Stranded (En Rade), Drifting, Against Nature, Las Bas, Modern Art and The Cathedral. In addition to En Route and The Oblate of St Benedict. Robert Baldick's brilliant book The Life of J.-K. Huysmans was published by Dedalus in the autumn of 2005, updated and edited by Brendan King.
Brendan King is a freelance writer, reviewer and translator with a special interest in late nineteenth-century French fiction. His Ph.D. was on the life and work of J.-K.Huysmans. He has translated La-Bas, Parisian Sketches, Marthe, Against Nature, Stranded, The Cathedral, The Vatard Sisters, Drifting and Modern Art by J.-K. Huysmans for Dedalus. He has also edited The Life of J.-K.Huysmans by Robert Baldick for Dedalus. He lives in Paris.


"Few late 19 Century art critics were more clearly on the right side of history than J.-K. Huysmans. To read his essay on the 'Exhibition of the Independents in 1880' is to discover in retrospect an anticipation of the 20th Century's aesthetic preferences...King displays both considerable knowledge and easy humour..." --Nicholas White, The Times Literary Supplement
"Huysmans reviewed the Salons of 1879-82 and the Independent Exhibitions of 1880-82 at considerable length. His articles, collected as L'Art moderne (1883), have never before been translated into English, probably because he is the least known of the writer-critics, and his French is often not straightforward. Robert Baldick, biographer of Huysmans (1955) described his style as 'one of the strangest literary idioms in existence'. Brendan King, who has already translated most of Huysmans's fiction, has produced an excellent version. Rarely can it have been such fun to read translated denunciations of so many forgotten French pictures." Julian Barnes, The London Review of Books