His Masterpiece

Émile ZOLA (1840 - 1902), translated by Ernest Alfred VIZETELLY (1853 - 1922)

“His Masterpiece" (“L’Oeuvre”) is a fictionalized account of the Parisian art world in the mid 19th century, and the emerging Realism, Naturalism and Impressionism movements. Emile Zola and Paul Cezanne had been friends from childhood, and the main character of the novel is thought to be largely drawn from Cezanne, as well as from Eduard Manet and Claude Monet. Zola himself appears in the work, in the character of Pierre Sandoz, a novelist. The painter in this story, Claude Lantier, attempts to revolutionize the art establishment, where artists painted in the studio and concentrated on mythological, historical and religious subjects. Instead, Lantier paints outdoors, in natural light, and with commonplace subjects. He gained a small group of supporters and fellow-practitioners in art, literature, architecture and music, but he could never manage to break out, and the public persisted in misunderstanding his aims. Meanwhile the artist sank into obsession and depression. It is believed that the publication of this book, which documents the failure of the artist to realize his potential, led to a permanent rift between Cezanne and Zola. - Summary by Lisa Reichert

Genre(s): Historical Fiction

Language: English

Section Chapter Reader Time
Play 00 Preface Lisa Reichert
00:12:32
Play 01 Chapter 1, Part A Lisa Reichert
00:31:53
Play 02 Chapter 1, Part B Lisa Reichert
00:23:36
Play 03 Chapter 2, Part A Lisa Reichert
00:45:03
Play 04 Chapter 2, Part B Lisa Reichert
00:24:44
Play 05 Chapter 3, Part A Lisa Reichert
00:40:42
Play 06 Chapter 3, Part B Lisa Reichert
00:45:10
Play 07 Chapter 4, Part A Lisa Reichert
00:29:57
Play 08 Chapter 4, Part B Lisa Reichert
00:41:29
Play 09 Chapter 5, Part A Lisa Reichert
00:24:26
Play 10 Chapter 5, Part B Lisa Reichert
00:45:46
Play 11 Chapter 6, Part A Lisa Reichert
00:24:40
Play 12 Chapter 6, Part B Lisa Reichert
00:43:02
Play 13 Chapter 7, Part A Lisa Reichert
00:46:33
Play 14 Chapter 7, Part B Lisa Reichert
00:38:51
Play 15 Chapter 8, Part A Lisa Reichert
00:35:49
Play 16 Chapter 8, Part B Lisa Reichert
00:39:04
Play 17 Chapter 9, Part A Lisa Reichert
00:48:11
Play 18 Chapter 9, Part B Lisa Reichert
00:41:21
Play 19 Chapter 10, Part A Lisa Reichert
00:39:10
Play 20 Chapter 10, Part B Lisa Reichert
00:47:10
Play 21 Chapter 10, Part C Lisa Reichert
00:27:38
Play 22 Chapter 11, Part A Lisa Reichert
00:40:09
Play 23 Chapter 11, Part B Lisa Reichert
00:51:12
Play 24 Chapter 12, Part A Lisa Reichert
00:20:03
Play 25 Chapter 12, Part B Lisa Reichert
00:36:03