Category Archives: Art

Art Review: “The Floor Planers” By Impressionist Gustave Caillebotte (1875) (Musée d’Orsay Video)

For her performances in over sixty films and forty theatrical productions, Ariane Ascaride has notably been awarded the César for best actress in Marius and Jeannette (1998) and the Coppa Volpi for lead actress at the Venice mostra for Gloria Mundi (2019), two films directed by Robert Guédiguian. She is also a director and a screenwriter.

The Floor Planers by Gustave Caillebotte 1875 video by Musée d'Orsay Januaary 2020

Les raboteurs de parquet (English title: The Floor Scrapers) is an oil painting by French Impressionist Gustave Caillebotte. The canvas measures 102 by 146.5 centimetres (40.2 in × 57.7 in). It was originally given by Caillebotte’s family in 1894 to the Musée du Luxembourg, then transferred to the Musée du Louvre in 1929. In 1947, it was moved to the Galerie nationale du Jeu de Paume, and in 1986, it was transferred again to the Musée d’Orsay in Paris, where it is currently displayed.

Musée d’Orsay website

Art: “The Rediscovery Of Gaston Lévy’s Collection” Of Paul Signac & Camille Pissarro (Sotheby’s Video)

Known best as the author of Paul Signac’s first catalog raisonné, Gaston Lévy was perhaps the most remarkable art collector in pre-war Paris. After the Nazi regime seized his properties and dispersed his paintings, masterpieces were thought to have been lost to the Lévy family forever.

Camille Pissarro Gelée blanche Jeune Paysanne Faisant Du Feu 1888

However, This February Sotheby’s is proud to offer three recently restituted masterworks from the Lévy collection in our Impressionist & Modern Art Evening Sale. In this episode of Expert Voices, Sotheby’s Head of Restitution Lucian Simmons chronicles the story of Gaston Lévy’s collection and explores the extraordinary talent of Paul Signac and Camille Pissarro through their works Gelee Blache, Quai de Clichy and La Corne D’or.

Paul Signac Quai De Clichy Temps Gris 1887

(4 February | London)

New Exhibitions: Painter Andrew Wyeth (1917-2009) – The Forum Gallery NYC

Photo of Andrew Wyeth by Peter Ralston In the Studio Courtesy of Ralston Gallery
Photo of Andrew Wyeth by Peter Ralston In the Studio Courtesy of Ralston Gallery

Forum Gallery, New York, presents an exhibition of works by Andrew Wyeth (1917-2009), who set the standard for American figurative art in the second half of the Twentieth Century. Working in pencil, watercolor, egg tempera and his much-beloved personal medium of drybrush, Wyeth, throughout his life, was a resolute champion of the universal life force of each person he chose to paint, and of the unique, difficult, ever-changing rural American world in which he chose to live. His art was controversial as it was popular, and he remains one of very few living artists to be celebrated by important single-person exhibitions at The Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York (1976) and the National Gallery of Art, Washington, DC (1987).

Firewood Study for Groundhog Day 1959 Andrew Wyeth
Firewood Study for Groundhog Day 1959 Andrew Wyeth (The Forum Gallery NYC)

“Andrew Wyeth: Five Decades” at Forum Gallery features paintings dated from 1940 through 1994, including landscapes that imply personal struggle and portray great beauty; and provocative figurative works, including examples from The Helga Pictures.

Forum Gallery NYC LogoWebsite

 

Artists: Belgian Surrealist Painter René Magritte Linked “Consciousness And The External World”

From a Christies.com online article:

René Magritte, The Son of Man, 1964
René Magritte, The Son of Man, 1964

‘The creation of new objects, the transformation of known objects; a change of substance in the case of certain objects: a wooden sky, for instance; the use of words in association with images; the misnaming of an object… the use of certain visions glimpsed between sleeping and waking, such in general were the means devised to force objects out of the ordinary, to become sensational, and so establish a profound link between consciousness and the external world.’

René François Ghislain Magritte (1898-1967) was born in Lessines, Belgium. His father was a tailor and textile merchant; his mother committed suicide in 1912, drowning herself in the River Sambre.

René Magritte 1898 - 1967 Le Somnambule 1946

From the 1930s, Magritte sought to find ‘solutions’ to particular ‘problems’ posed by different types of objects, a method that enabled him to challenge and reconfigure the most ubiquitous and commonplace elements of everyday life. These problems obsessed him until he was able to conceive of an image to solve them.

This philosophical method had come to him after waking from a dream in 1932. In his semi-conscious state, he looked over at a birdcage that was in his room but saw not the bird that inhabited the cage, but instead an egg. This ‘splendid misapprehension’ allowed him to grasp, in his own words, ‘a new and astonishing poetic secret.’

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Fine Art: Magic Realism In The Work Of Dutch Painter Carel Willink

Sotheby's LogoCarel Willink was a pioneer of Magic Realism, an avant-garde movement of Dutch modernism closely associated with Surrealism. In this episode of Anatomy of an Artwork, discover how a visit to Italy’s Bomarzo Gardens following the death of his wife inspired a series of paintings featuring monsters, see how Willink drew further inspiration from dream-like images and illusions, and learn how his near-photographic style exudes a sense of mystery and enchantment.

Website

New Museum Exhibitions: “Van Eyck – An Optical Revolution” At MSK Ghent

Worldwide, only approximately twenty works by Van Eyck have been preserved. Quite exceptionally, over half of these will travel to Ghent in 2020 for the exhibition ‘Van Eyck. An optical revolution’ at the Museum of Fine Arts (MSK). In what promises to be an unmissable, tour de force of an exhibition, the world of Van Eyck and his revolutionary gaze will be brought to life like never before.

Jan van Eyck, Portrait of a Man with a Blue Chaperon, c. 1428-30 (Muzeul National Brukenthal, Sibiu, Romania)
Jan van Eyck, Portrait of a Man with a Blue Chaperon, c. 1428-30 (Muzeul National Brukenthal, Sibiu, Romania)

The pinnacle of Late Medieval art
Van Eyck distinguished himself from his peers and triggered an optical revolution. With his matchless technique, scientific knowledge and unrivalled observational skills, he elevated oil painting to unprecedented heights and determined the future course of Western art. Never before had a painter made reality so tangible: all that seems to be missing from his portraits is his subjects’ breath, while his landscapes reveal the world in all its facets. Van Eyck trained his eye on the tiniest details before casting it wide again to create unforgettable panoramas.

His masterpiece, ‘The Adoration of the Mystic Lamb’ (1432, St Bavo’s Cathedral, Ghent), bears witness to all three of these qualities. The restoration of the outer wings of the altarpiece will play a central role in the exhibition. Undertaken by the Royal Institute for Cultural Heritage (KIK), the project commenced at the Museum of Fine Arts Ghent in 2012. Visitors will have the opportunity to get close to the work and admire the spectacular results.

 

MSK Kent LogoIn dialogue with Van Eyck’s contemporaries
In order to contextualise Van Eyck’s optical revolution, his paintings will be shown alongside works by his most talented contemporaries from Germany, France, Italy and Spain. These artists also moved in exalted circles and received prestigious commissions. The exhibition focuses on the artistic similarities and differences between their works, thus delving deeper into the historical context in which they were created.

‘Van Eyck. An optical revolution’ unravels the myths about the artist and considers his technique, his oeuvre and his influence from a fresh perspective. This exhibition will awaken a sense of wonder among visitors, comparable to that which people would have felt when they saw his works for the first time: a once-in-a-lifetime experience.

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Art History: “The Rivalry Of Rembrandt And Jan Lievens” (Sotheby’s)

In this episode of Expert Voices, Otto Naumann explores their friendship and budding rivalry through Lievens’ masterwork Woman Embraced by a Man, Modelled by the Young Rembrandt. From the outset of his career, Lievens was at times bolder than Rembrandt, and the two constantly learned from one another during this critical period in their development.

The Rivalry of Rembrandt and Jan Lievens Sotheby's video January 17 2020

In early 17th century Holland, a young Rembrandt spent his days studying and working with fellow artist Jan Lievens. After apprenticing together in Amsterdam, the two likely shared a studio in their hometown of Leiden and even depicted each other in their compositions.

This signature audacity is on full display in in Woman Embraced by a Man, which will be offered as a highlight of Sotheby’s Master Painting Evening Sale. (29 January | New York)