Saturday, March 7, 2009
The Gamut of Art
Being that Paris is probably the center of the planet for fine art; what to do? I will most likely visit (and adore) many of the well known museums (again!); but it seems that I do delight in finding something a little offbeat. Impressionism has always been a passion and I found something I was unfamiliar with and yet interwoven:
At the turn of the century Montmartre. From Impressionism to the School of Paris.
The story of Suzanne Valadon and Maurice Utrillo was the turn of the century Montmartre. This "couple" mother-son, atypical and bohemian, is the focus of an entire artistic world which straddles between two periods, between two worlds. It illustrates how the impressionist movement, installed in bourgeois comfort will save the world through one of its most beautiful, Eger-Suzanne-Valadon, to the School of Paris with the most symbolic of its artists, Mauritius Utrillo. It is also the story of a difficult era of artists from the middle class to a new group of artists who come from more populist social groups.
Additionally, what drew my interest were the relationships Suzanne Valadon had as she pursued her interest in art, first working as a model for artists, observing and learning their techniques. She modeled for Henri de Toulouse-Lautrec (who gave her painting lessons), Pierre-Auguste Renoir, and Pierre-Cécile Puvis de Chavannes, and is known to have had an affair with Renoir and Puvis. She befriended Edgar Degas who was impressed with her bold line drawings and fine paintings, purchased her work and encouraged her. In 1894, Valadon became the first woman painter admitted to the Société Nationale des Beaux-Arts.
On the other hand, modern art has never been my favorite genre, but I'm usually willing to try something new; a show at a local sandwich bar I already had on my list:
An exhibition of Collage by Matthew Rose; an artist and writer living in Paris.
Now I know I have way to many things to do on my list, so we will just have to see if I get to these, but I sure hope so! I'm off tomorrow!