Tissot’s Great Reversion
One of the great pleasures of The Catholic Thing are the images that accompany every column every day: paintings that, as Bob Royal wrote in our inaugural column in 2008, demonstrate “the concrete historical reality of Catholicism. . .the richest cultural tradition in the world.” [Note from RR: The beautiful images in the columns are the skillful work of Mr. Miner.]
Jacques Joseph Tissot was born in 1836 in Nantes, near the confluence of France’s Erdre and Loire rivers. His father was in the drapery business, his mother designed hats, and young Jacques never wanted to be anything but an artist.
He went off to Paris at 19 and enrolled at the Ecole des Beaux-Arts. Among his friends were James McNeil Whistler, the American who painted a rather well-known picture of his mother, and the great French artist Edgar Degas, one of the founders of Impressionism. (Above: James-Jacques-Joseph Tissot by Edgar Degas, c.1867 [The MET, New York].)