Known fondly as "Robert des ruines" because of his penchant for painting ancient ruins, Hubert Robert was regarded during his lifetime as one of France's most successful and prominent artists.
In the first monographic exhibition showcasing Robert's full achievement as a draftsman and painter, some 50 paintings and 50 drawings will chart his development in Rome and subsequent high level of accomplishment after his return to Paris. The exhibition will also focus on Robert's lasting contribution to French visual culture and the fundamental role he played in promoting the architectural capriccio (caprice or fantasy), an art form in which famous monuments of antiquity and modernity were imaginatively combined to create striking and novel city scenes and landscapes.
Whether you go or not, you can learn more about Robert's work in Hubert Robert, the outstanding publication which accompanies this, the first monographic exhibition of his work. It illuminates Robert's remarkable artistic achievements and his lasting contributions to French visual culture.
Alternatively: Futures & Ruins: Eighteenth-Century Paris and the Art of Hubert Robert. At the center of this lively narrative lie Robert’s depictions of the ruins of Paris—macabre and spectacular paintings of fires and demolitions created on the eve of the French Revolution. The paintings are examined as expressions of the pleasures and perils of a risk economy. This captivating account—lavishly illustrated—recovers the critical significance of the 18th-century cult of ruins and of Robert’s art.