Archive for expressionism

Happy Birthday Chaim Soutine!

Posted in ART, ART HISTORY, ART VIDEOS, ARTISTS BIRTHDAYS with tags , , , , , , , on January 13, 2012 by echostains

Soutine by Modigliani

Today is the birthday of Expressionist artist Chaim Soutine (b 1893 – 1943 Belarus)  Soutine who was inspired by classical painting in the European tradition  and favoured colour, texture and shape over representation.  His work acted as a bridge between traditional approach and the evolvment of Abstract Expressionism.

Born near Minsk (when it was part of the Russian empire) and one of eleven children, Soutine studied at the Vilna Academy of Fine Arts in Vilnius between 1910 – 1913  He emigrated  to Paris with fellow artist Pinchus Kremegne (1890 – 1981) and Michel Kikoine 1892 – 1968) where he studied under Fernand Cormon at the Errcole des Beaux-Arts.

Little Girl with Doll 1919

Portait of a Nurse c 1916

He became friends with Amedeo Modigliani (1884–1920)   and he painted Soutine’s portrait several times when they were all struggling artists in Montparnasse. Modigliani’s  most famous portrait of Soutine was painted on an apartment door belonging to Leopold Zborowski (1889 – 1932) their art dealer.  Zborowski was later to take the artist to Nice to escape Paris when it was being bombed in WWI.

After struggle and poverty, often helped by his friends and  fellow artists, Soutine finally managed to sell 100 paintings to American collector Albert C. Barnes who established his Foundation Museum in Merion, USA in 1922..  With the proceeds, the artist now began to enjoy a better life and dividing his time between Paris , the Pyrenees and the Riviera.

Man with ribbons

Although a passionate artist, Soutine left few works.  He suffered from anxiety and tempers and destroyed a lot of his paintings.  There are a few stories about this artist which give us a sketch of his personality and the effect it had upon his work.  One of them concerns one of his most iconic set of images  series  Le Boeuf Ecorche’ .

Three studies for the Crucifixion by Francis Bacon 1962

His neighbours complained about the stench of the animal carcass which he kept in his studio and called the police.  But Soutine remained unrepentant, advocating art over hygiene.  He painted 10 of the carcass paintings,  inspired by Rembrandt’s Carcass of Beef (1655) sometimes known as The Flayed Ox after studying the Old Master’s in the Louvre, Paris.  One of the paintings in Soutine’s series Le Boeuf Ecorche’(1924) sold for £7.8 million in 2006.

Little Pastry Cook

His work is characterised by its frantic brushwork, often violent colour and distorted images which covey emotion and he liked to paint bell boys, waiters and hotel workers – ordinary everyday people. In 1937 Soutine was hailed as a great painter, even though he did not take part in an important exhibition The Origins and Development of International Independent Art which was held at the Galerie nationale du Jeu de Paume.  Very soon after that, the France was invaded by the Germans and Soutine, as a Jew had to flee Paris to avoid arrest by the Gestapo.  He lived as best he could and eventually left a safe shelter to return to Paris for an operation for a bleeding stomach ulcer.  The operation was not a success and he died of a perforated ulcer on August 9, 1943  . Soutine was interred in Cimetière du Montparnasse, Paris.

Video by bestjonbon with thanks!

Also thanks to;-

Lots of information about this artist here

Modiglini portrait of Soutine from here

Man with Ribbons and Little Pastry Cook images from here

Bacon triptych image from here

Landschaft mit Häusern, 1918 and Portait of a Nurse, c. 1916   Little Girl with Doll, 1919  all from this blogspot

Good images from Oscar Grillo Oscartoons  and here

PLUS

There’s a big birthday party going on over at my sister site Bookstains – and you’re invited!

UPDATE

HAPPY BIRTHDAY ROBERT BURNS (25 January 1759 – 21 July 1796)  Here’s a video I made of Scottish artists;-

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Happy Birthday Egon Schiele!

Posted in ART, ART HISTORY, ARTISTS BIRTHDAYS with tags , , , , , on June 12, 2011 by echostains

Nude-woman-hair-dressing

Today is the birthday of Austrian Expressionist Egon Schiele (b. 1890 – 1918).  Schiele was a protégé of Gustave Klimt and is also associated with the art nouveau movement.  His expressive use of line indicates his substantial  talent.   Shieles’ figures are often twisted and distorted.  They are sinewy, sexually posed and very often disturbing. 

Seated-Woman-With-Bent-Knee

Schiele attended the Vienna School of Art and Crafts (Kunstgewerbeschule) where Gustave Klimt had also studied.  After a year, and at his relative’s insistence, he then moved onto the more traditional Akademie der Bildenden Künste  where  he studied drawing and painting.

Standing-Male-Nude-With-A-Red-Loincloth

Gustave Klimt took a lot of interest in Schiele, mentoring him  and even buying some of his drawings.  Klimt appreciated Schiele’s talent and  took the young artist under his wing,, securing him patrons and introducing him to the arts and crafts workshop (Wiener Werkstätte,) who were connected with the Secession

Standing-nude-young-girl

In 1909, under Klimt guidance, Schiele exhibited at the Vienna Kunstschau.  There he was to encounter the works of Vincent Van Gogh and Edvard Munch who also exhibited.  Schiele’s work explored the human form and sexuality, which is often very explicit in some of his work.  The artist himself was often the centre of controversy over his involvement with his young models.  His favorite model was 17-year-old Valerie Neuzil (known as Wally) and she features heavily in his work.

Frau-Schiele

Schiele’s led a very chequered life – and  was even imprisoned briefly for using underage models.  In time he married a ‘suitable’ and more socially acceptable bride than poor Wally.  In World War 1 he was stationed in Prague were he drew and painted whilst guarding the Russian prisoners of war.   In 1918 he took part in the Secession’s 49th exhibition in Vienna, where he also designed a poster for the event, as well as exhibiting 50 works.  The success of this show was to elevate Schiele’s work, increasing its  popularity and its price.  Schiele died a tragic death three days after his pregnant wife in the autumn of the 1918 Spanish flu epidemic.  He was only 28 years old.

Dead-Mother

More detail of Schiele’s life can be found here

All images from http://www.egon-schiele.net/ with thanks!

Scream and Scream Again!

Posted in ART, ART HISTORY, ART PORTFOLIO MY PERSONAL ART with tags , , , , on May 7, 2011 by echostains

The Scream by Edvard Munch 1893

Today is the anniversary of when the famous painting ‘The Scream’ by Norwegian artist Edvard Munch (1863 – 1944) was recovered undamaged where it was first stolen in February 1994 from the Oslo Museum.  It had been missing nearly 3 months.

Artist and printmaker Munch explored themes of madness, jealousy and sexual awakening, among other psychological states.  His childhood was tragic.  His sister and mother died of tuberculosis and there was mental instability in his family.  The Scream’ (also known as ‘the Shriek) or to give its original title Der Schrei der Natur   means ‘The Scream of Nature) and the painting was part of his ‘Frieze of Life’ which he painted in 1893.

A lot has been written about Munch’s tragic personal life as well as his art  (read two of my earlier posts here and here ).  Munch. although striking, tall and handsome to women was himself quite wary of the opposite sex.  He had a fear of marriage, convinced that any children he may have may be prone to depression and physical illness – a family trait.

My original print re assembled

The location in the painting has been identified as the road leading up to the mental hospital Munch’s sister Laura Catherine was a patient in at the time of the painting.  I once watched a programme about Munch and this painting and it was said that screams could be heard from the interns  by Munch and his family.

In a page in his diary headed Nice 22.01.1892, Munch described his inspiration for the image thus:

I was walking along a path with two friends – the sun was setting – suddenly the sky turned blood red – I paused, feeling exhausted, and leaned on the fence – there was blood and tongues of fire above the blue-black fjord and the city – my friends walked on, and I stood there trembling with anxiety – and I sensed an infinite scream passing through nature.

This painting has inspired films, masks and other art – my own included.  The painting has been stolen a few times.  the first time was February 12th 1994 and recovered undamaged in May 1994. 

Final print

Another version of ‘The Scream’ (there are several) was stolen by gunmen in 2004 and recovered in 2006 (lots of details about the thefts here.

In 2004 I even ‘borrowed’ the painting myself, basing some lino prints on it.  The intention behind this was to show the alternative worlds between madness and sanity.  I did this by cutting my print up and re-assembling, then making  further prints.  The print is divided and has the line running down the middle to show the split personality of the self and other.  I have heightened the colours to show intensity and acuteness – but I have made one muddier and more nebular to show the hidden and less lucid mood.

Original Scream image from here

More about this painting here.

Munch Museum here

Art I LOVE Maggi Hambling

Posted in ART, FAVORITE ART: Art I LOVE with tags , , , , , on January 29, 2011 by echostains

I’ve always loved the art of Maggie Hambling.  I’m a big fan of painterly, expressionistic art – words which aptly describe this artists work. 

Maggie Hambling

Hambling studied East Anglian School of Painting and Drawing from 1960, under the tutelage of Cedric Morris and then at the Ipswich school of Art (1962 – 64).  She then went to Camberwell  (1964 -1967) graduating at the Slade School of Art in 1969.

Max Wall by Maggi Hambling

Though known mainly for her portraiture – a lot  were in the National Gallery where she became the first artist in residence in 1980 and did a series of portraits of the comedienne Max Wall.   

She  has also created sculpture including : Memorial to Oscar Wilde London and Scallop,  an interlocking steel sculpture on Alderburgh beach, dedicated to the composer Benjamin Britten  The sculpture itself was made by a local foundry and copied from a 4 inch model supplied by the artist.   The sculpture has created a lot of controversy – some say it enhances the view of the sea, others say it blocks the sea out.  The sculpture has been vandalised a few times too.  Hambling herself calls it a conversation piece – a conversation with the sea;-

“An important part of my concept is that at the centre of the sculpture, where the sound of the waves and the winds are focused, a visitor may sit and contemplate the mysterious power of the sea,”

 

 

      

  

The Scallop by Maggi Hambling

 

Hambling’s subjects include a lot of Gay people including George Melly, Stephen Fry and Quentin Crisp. 

George Melly drawing

 

From the 1980s Hambling turned mainly to landscapes and recently seascapes.  Her work has become  a lot more abstract and in 1995 she received an OBE for her services to painting and appointed a CBE in the new years Honours list in 2010.

George Hambling

 Quote from here

Information about the artist – start here

Wonderful interview which really reveals the personality of the artist here  What a character 🙂

Ghost of George Singing

Max Wall image from here  Scallop image here  Melly drawing from here George Always here, Ghost of George singing here, Archie MacDonald here  Francis Bacon image from here  Hambling photo here

Francis Bacon by Hambling

Hambling’s website  http://www.maggihambling.com/

The short video shows extracts of her work in her studio. Video by shabboleth Thanks!

Archie MacDonald 1981 Hambling

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

Happy Birthday (again) Edvard Munch!

Posted in ART, ART HISTORY, ART VIDEOS, ARTISTS BIRTHDAYS with tags , , , , , on December 12, 2010 by echostains

Today is the birthday of Edvard Munch (1863 – 1944) Norwegian Symbolist artist and printmaker and a forerunner of the Expressionist art movement .  There a quite a few videos to choose from which feature his work, but I rather like this one because of the way the music seems to capture the mood of his work. The music sounds to me like it comes from Mike Oldfield’s Tubular Bells.

An early Echostains posts explores this artist further and references his most famous painting ‘The Scream’ and where the idea may have come from.

https://echostains.wordpress.com/2009/12/12/happy-birthday-edvard-munch/

A brush with Genius

Posted in ART, ART HISTORY with tags , , , , , on August 18, 2010 by echostains

O Connel lbridge

John (or ‘Jack’  Butler Yeats b. 1861 – 1957, London  was the brother of the famous Irish poet William Butler Yeats.  His romantic expressionistic art  explored the Irish way of life, horse racing and Celtic myth.  He started his artistic career  at 17 and over his lifetime he produced over a thousand works. 

He sings to the night

His early work was realistic but after 1920s onwards  his work became more expressive and went from the more graphic to the use of thickly applied impasto, which seems to have become a trademark of his. Yeats’s use of this medium, thickly applied does not translate  to screen very well, though it does give you a slight hint of the lyrical way he applies oil.  In my opinion the paintings are better seen in a gallery setting.  

Queen Maeve walked upon this Strand

 Yeats’s  later work was inspired by Austrian expressionist artist Oskar Kokoschka (b. 1886 – 1980) who was also a poet and writer and playwright  like Yeats.  I shall be doing a post about this fabulous artist whom I greatly admire at a later date

There is a wonderful website of information and images here  Morning after rain image from here, Queen Maeve here and He sings to the Night here

Art uncovered and recovered – Gideon Rubin

Posted in ART, ART DISCOVERED AND UNCOVERED with tags , , on May 30, 2010 by echostains

boy

I have just discovered the artist  Gideon Rubin.  His expressionistic art, does not rely of the facial features to put across mood or sentiment, he lets the body language speak for itself.  The artist uses subtle tones to convey mood and meaning into the blank expressions of the figures. 

Here’s a quote by the artist;- 

“Quickly scraping an old image and putting down a new one on top was my own way to express markings of time. I cover the canvas over and over again with an image observed or imagined. Focusing on tonal variations, applied on small or large canvases, my paintings seem to create a sense of gloom – a pale light that, far from being colorless, contains purple, orange, blue and crimson. I try to create an image embodied with mystery, like a deja vu, as if seen before; an image lost, much like a memory. ” (sweet-station) 

 

It is fascinating how we automatically fill in the ‘blanks’ of the faces, using our own emotions to interpret the body language.  I’m not sure how this works, or even if everyone interprets differently, but here’s my intepretation (for what it’s worth)  How much does it  differ from yours? 

 

The top image coveys to me contemplation, that the boy is concentrating his thoughts.  There is an air of seriousness about him, he isn’t smiling but he isn’t sad either – just thoughtful.  The second image seems expectant to me, like he is anticipating something, sitting back and waiting.    The third image is interesting because it shows a relationship between the two girls.  My thoughts are that these two are sisters.  The blonde girl is bolder than her dark sister, who holds her back protectively.  I get the feeling that the dark-haired one is frightened and perhaps more timid.  These are only my interpretations – it would be interesting to see others. 

  Lots of his portraits here in this excellent site 

more about this artist’s work here