Wednesday, November 11, 2009
The Style Napoleon III
The Amateur Historian is not a fan of the Opera Garnier, which, in the Amateur Historian's humble opinion, looks as if the Baroque Era ate a bit of Romanticism that disagreed with it, then puked it up in the form of a building, then got so ashamed of what it had done, it kept flinging gold leaf, drapes, tassels, mirrors, tapestries and paintings at its mess. The Empress Eugenie, the wife of Emperor Napoleon III, during whose reign the Opera Garnier was first commissioned, did not like the building either.
When Garnier first submitted the designs for the Opera, the Empress looked at the bizarre Versailles-gone-so-froo-froo-wild-on-a-gold-leaf-bender plan and demanded what the building's style was supposed to be.
Garnier, looking at the Emperor, replied, "The style Napoleon III."
Needless to say, his design won.