ART 4 2-DAY 18 April v.10.30
BIRTH: 1884 MEIDNER
Died on 18 April 1898: Gustave
Moreau, French Symbolist
painter born on 06 April 1826. He was a strongly individual artist whose
highly wrought interpretations of mythical and religious scenes were widely
admired during his lifetime.
(A ne pas confondre avec Moreau-Vaches ni même avec Adrien Moreau.[18 Apr 1843 – 22 Feb 1906])
— His students included Henri Matisse [31 Dec 1869 – 03 Nov 1954], Georges Rouault [27 May 1871 – Feb 1948], Albert Marquet [27 Mar 1875 – 13 Jun 1947], Henri Manguin [23 Mar 1874 – 25 Sep 1949], Louis Valtat [1869-1952], Pierre Bonnaud [1865-1930], and Charles Hoffbauer [28 Jun 1875 – 1957].
— Moreau became one of the leading Symbolist artists. He was a student of Chassériau and was influenced by his master's exotic Romanticism, but Moreau went far beyond him in his feeling for the bizarre and developed a style that is highly distinctive in subject and technique. His preference was for mystically intense images evoking long-dead civilizations and mythologies, treated with an extraordinary sensuousness, his paint encrusted and jewel-like. Although he had some success at the Salon, he had no need to court this as he had private means, and much of his life was spent in seclusion. In 1892 he became a professor at the École des Beaux-Arts and proved an inspired teacher, bringing out his students' individual talents rather than trying to impose ideas on them. His students included Marquet and Matisse, but his favorite was Rouault, who
became the first curator of the Moreau Museum in Paris (the artist's house), which Moreau left to the nation on his death.
— Moreau's figures are ambiguous; it is hardly possible to distinguish at the first glance which of two lovers is the man, which the woman; all his characters are linked by subtle bonds of relationship... lovers look as though they were related, brothers as though they were lovers, men have the faces of virgins, virgins the faces of youths; the symbols of Good and Evil are entwined and equivocally confused.
— Without doubt Moreau was one of the greatest Symbolist artists. In 1841 he visited Italy, where he made drawings. He entered the studio of François Picot [17 Oct 1786 – 15 Mar 1868] at the Paris Beaux-Arts in 1846. He was a friend of Théodore Chassériau [1819-1856], whom he frequented from 1851 until the latter's death. From 1857 to 1859 Moreau traveled in Italy for the second time. He won considerable reputation at the 1864 Salon with his Oedipus and the Sphinx. Moreau's unfavorable critical reception in 1869 resulted in his returning to the Salon only in 1876 with his Salome Dancing Before Herod, which was admired by many critics, notably Huysmans. In 1884 Moreau succeeded Elie Delauney [1828-1891] as a teacher at the Beaux-Arts. Matisse, Marquet, Camoin [23 Sep 1879 – 20 May 1965], and Rouault were among his students and their works show his influence.
The heir of Romanticism and an admirer of the Italian masters of the Quattrocento, Gustave Moreau is the embodiment of Symbolism. He defined his art as a "passionate silence" and transcribed in it obsessions and oneiric themes which made him one of the great masters of sexual Symbolism. He seized upon the personage of Salome and made her one of the main themes of his work, if not indeed the most important. In his many variations on this theme, he portrayed Woman as both a seductress and an innocent.
— The students of Moreau included Henri Matisse [31 Dec 1869 – 03 Nov 1954], Georges Rouault [27 May 1871 – Feb 1948], Albert Marquet [27 Mar 1875 – 13 Jun 1947], Henri Manguin [23 Mar 1874 – 25 Sep 1949], Louis Valtat [1869-1952], Pierre Bonnaud [1865-1930], and Charles Hoffbauer [28 Jun 1875 – 1957].
— Autoportrait (1850, 41x32cm; 600x474pix, 55kb _ ZOOM to 1124x883pix, 252kb) _ C'est le seul portrait à l'huile de l'artiste par lui-même. Il le réalise à sa sortie de l'École royale des Beaux-Arts, à 24 ans. La lumière rembranesque confère à ce portrait une touche encore romantique.
Jupiter et Sémélé (1895, 212x118cm; 800x426pix, 258kb _ ZOOMable to 2034x1084pix, 640kb) surrounded by many other figures and superabundant ornamentation. _ According to Greek mythology, Semele, also called Thyone, was a daughter of Cadmus and Harmonia and mother of Dionysus (Bacchus) by Zeus. Semele's liaison with Zeus enraged Zeus's wife, Hera, who, disguised as an old nurse, coaxed Semele into asking Zeus to visit her in the same splendor in which he would appear before Hera. Zeus had already promised to grant Semele her every wish and thus was forced to grant a wish that would kill her: the splendor of his firebolts, as god of thunder, destroyed Semele. Zeus saved their unborn child, Dionysus from the womb. According to some versions of the story, Dionysus, himself immortal, descended into Hades after reaching maturity and brought Semele back, and she too became an immortal or even a goddess.
— Oedipus the Wayfarer (1888, 125x95cm ; _ ZOOMable)
— The Pierides (1889, 95x150cm ; _ ZOOMable)
— Bathsheba (1886, 59x41cm ; _ ZOOMable)
— Le Triomphe d'Alexandre le Grand (1885, 155x155cm ; _ ZOOMable) _ “Le jeune roi conquérant domine tout ce peuple captif, vaincu et rampant, à ses pieds, dompté de crainte et d'admiration. La petite vallée indienne où se dresse le trône immense et superbe contient l'Inde entière, les temples aux faîtes fantastiques, les idoles terribles, les lacs sacrés, les souterrains pleins de mystères et de terreurs, toute cette civilisation inconnue et troublante. Et la Grèce, l'âme de la Grèce rayonnante et superbe, triomphe au loin dans ces régions inexplorées du rêve et du mystère”.
C'est ainsi que Gustave Moreau parle de son tableau, sur lequel il travaille dès 1875, mais, qu'il n'achève qu'en 1890. Il a commencé à rassembler ces éléments dès 1873, pour un tableau nommé Porus, du nom du roi de l'Inde du Nord, ici blessé au premier plan, qu'affronta avec succès Alexandre le Grand en 326 avant J-C. Il calque des photographies de sculpture indienne de Samuel Bourne, ou puise à d'autres sources comme Le Magasin Pittoresque. Il dessine également les éléphants au jardin des plantes, pour le groupe central. Tout concourt à la féerie: la géographie du lieu, avec les montagnes en pain de sucre, l'architecture luxuriante qui ferme la perspective, les groupes d'hommes et de bêtes, à peine distincts au sol, que domine, dans sa position hiératique sans doute calquée sur un bas relief ou sur une intaille, un Alexandre triomphant.
Il semble que Gustave Moreau n'ait pas repris ce tableau qui le satisfaisait dans son état d'apparent inachèvement, avec cette juxtaposition de tâches de couleurs et de motifs linéaires en broderie. Gustave Moreau ne conçoit pas la représentation du sujet comme une reconstitution historique, mais comme une œuvre à caractère symbolique où il lui importe seulement de donner, sans souci chronologique - avec des monuments de toutes les époques et de toutes les religions - l'idée de l'Inde, pays du rêve. L'artiste célèbre un personnage minuscule dans un tableau immense, et à travers Alexandre, une Grèce magnanime et victorieuse, le prestige et le triomphe de la civilisation sur l'humanité.
— Poète mort porté par un centaure (1890, 25x24cm ; _ ZOOMable)
— The Unicorns (1885, 115x90cm ; _ ZOOMable)
— Les Chimères (1884, 236x204 cm; 600x516pix, 68kb) _ detail (800x566pix, 338kb ; _ ZOOMable) _ Dans la mythologie, la Chimère, monstre fabuleux, possède trois têtes: de lion, de chèvre et de dragon, cette dernière à l'extrémité de la queue. Elle ravage la Lycie, et sera tuée par Bellérophon et son cheval ailé, Pégase. Dans un paysage arboré, une jeune femme nue se confie à un autre personnage ailé, probablement un centaure. Même inachevée, la toile est une des plus personnelles que le peintre ait produit. Les femmes sont associées à des animaux fantastiques empruntés au bestiaire de la mythologie ou du christianisme médiéval. Le thème de la Chimère est cher à Moreau, qui le traite à sa manière: dès avant son voyage en Italie, il dessine et peint plusieurs œuvres sur ce thème. Cependant, le centaure ailé capturant la femme reste une iconographie qui lui est particulière.
Cette grande toile donne l'occasion à Moreau d'exprimer les sentiments que lui inspirent les Chimères, qu'il décrit ainsi : "cette île des rêves fantastiques renferme toutes les formes de la passion, de la fantaisie, du caprice chez la femme, la femme dans son essence première, l'être inconscient, folle de l'inconnu, du mystère, éprise du mal sous forme de séduction perverse et diabolique. Des femmes enfourchant des chimères qui les emportent dans l'espace, d'où elles retombent éperdues d'horreur et de vertige". On ne peut s'empêcher de rapprocher ces paroles de l'idée que Moreau se fait de la femme, à laquelle il associe tantôt des images de volupté, tantôt un rôle satanique.
— Les Chimères (pastel inachevé d'une seule chimère, 30x22cm; 600x430cm, 40kb)
— Night (1880, oval 26x21cm ; _ ZOOMable)
— Phaéthon (1878, 99x65cm ; _ ZOOMable) _ According to Greek mythology, Phaethon (meaning “Shining” or “Radiant”)was the son of Helios, the sun god, and a woman or nymph variously identified as Clymene, Prote, or Rhode. Taunted with illegitimacy, Phaethon appealed to his father, who swore to prove his paternity by giving him whatever he wanted. Phaethon asked to be allowed to drive the chariot of the sun through the heavens for a single day. Helios, bound by his oath, had to let him make the attempt. Phaethon set off but was entirely unable to control the horses of the sun chariot, which came too near to the earth and began to scorch it. To prevent further damage, Zeus hurled a thunderbolt at Phaethon, who fell to the earth at the mouth of the river Eridanus (the Po).
— Young Moses (1878, 185x135cm ; _ ZOOMable)
— Saint Sébastien (1875, 115x90cm ; _ ZOOMable) just before being pierced by arrows.
— Salomé Dancing before Herod (1876, 144x103cm ; _ ZOOMable)
— Leda (1880, 34x21cm ; _ ZOOMable)
— Messalina (1874, 242x137cm ; _ ZOOMable)
— Saint Margaret (1873, 41x21cm ; _ ZOOMable)
— Hesiod and the Muse (1870, 33x20cm ; _ ZOOMable)
— Hesiod and the Muses (1860, 236x155cm ; _ ZOOMable)
— Prométhée (1868, 205x122cm ; _ ZOOMable) _ Prométhée est l'un des Titans de la mythologie grecque. Bienfaisant pour les hommes, il dérobe le feu aux dieux pour le leur livrer caché dans un bâton creux. Pour sa punition, il est enchaîné au sommet du Caucase, où un aigle lui ronge le foie qui sans cesse repousse. Délivré par Héraclès qui tue l'aigle, il est très populaire en Attique, pour avoir enseigné aux hommes le savoir fondateur d'une civilisation. Au Salon de 1868, ce Prométhée, rejeté par la critique, attire l'attention de Théophile Gautier: “Moreau n'a pas donné à son Prométhée les proportions colossales du Prométhée d'Eschyle. Ce n'est pas un Titan. C'est un homme auquel il nous semble que l'artiste ait voulu donner quelque ressemblance avec le Christ, dont, selon quelques pères de l'Eglise, il est la figure et la prédiction païennes. Car lui aussi il voulut racheter les hommes et souffrit pour eux ”.
Saint Georges et le Dragon (1890, 141x97cm ; _ ZOOMable)
— different but very similar Saint Georges (1869, 45x30cm ; _ ZOOMable)
— The Muses Leaving their Father Apollo to go and Enlighten the World (1868, 292x152cm ; _ ZOOMable)
— Andromeda (1869, 55x43cm ; _ ZOOMable) with a very large and ornate frame.
— Diomedes Devoured by his Horses (1866, 19x17cm ; _ ZOOMable) _ As the shadowy figure of Hercules observes from between two columns in the background, four wild horses rip apart the slender body of King Diomedes. The brown mare fastens her teeth on his arm, while another sinks her jaw into his leg. Bodies of the horses' previous victims lie piled to the right, above a pool of blood-stained water. This scene shows the dramatic climax from the eighth of the 12 labors of Hercules, who was ordered to capture the four flesh-eating horses belonging to King Diomedes. Hercules killed the king in battle and fed his body to the horses, which tamed them.
— a different Diomedes Devoured by his Horses (1865, 138x84cm ; _ ZOOMable)
— Jason (1865, 204x121cm ; _ ZOOMable)
— The Young Man and Death (1865, 213x126cm ; _ ZOOMable)
— Thracian Girl carrying the Head of Orpheus on his Lyre (1865, 154x100cm ; _ ZOOMable) _ Orpheus was an ancient Greek legendary hero who received his first lyre from the god Apollo. Orpheus' singing and playing the lyre were so beautiful that animals and even trees and rocks moved about him in dance. But the god Bacchus became jealous of the worship Orpheus was giving to Apollo rather than to him. So Bacchus got women of Thrace to become bacchantes and to tear Orpheus to pieces in a wild Bacchic orgy. But his severed head kept singing and his lyre playing.
— Œdipe et le sphinx (1864, 206x105cm ; _ ZOOMable) _ La présentation au Salon de 1864 de Œdipe et le sphinx fait sensation. Théophile Gautier rapporte ce coup de théâtre: “La physionomie de l'œdipe, espèce d'Hamlet grec posé en face du problème de la vie, mais plus résolu que le prince de Danemark, répondait assez à certaines aspirations idéales et sa rêverie prenaient des apparences de profondeur: l'exécution archaïque, imitée des premiers maîtres de la renaissance italienne, avait, à défaut d'originalité virtuelle, le mérite d'isoler l'œuvre de l'habileté banale et courante de lui donner un air dédaigneux des façons à la mode. L'Œdipe et le Sphinx de Moreau devait commander et commanda l'attention.”
— Hercules and the Hydra (1876, 175x153cm; _ ZOOMable)
— Apollo and the Nine Muses (1856, 103x83 cm ; _ ZOOMable)
— Death Offers Crowns to the Winner of the Tournament (1860, 92x142cm ; _ ZOOMable)
— Les Filles de Thespius (1853, 258x255cm ; _ ZOOMable) _ detail (_ ZOOMable)_ The story told by Apollodorus in The Library [English translation][Myth Man's humorous distortion of the story] is that King Thespius, whose wife Megamede, daughter of Arneus, had produced fifty daughters but no son, was having his cattle decimated by the frightful lion of Cithaeron. So he sought the help of Hercules, son of Zeus, who had just turned eighteen but was already renowned for his superhuman strength. For fifty days Hercules went out to hunt the lion, and when he came back in the evening the king entertained him and each night bedded one of his daughters with him. Hercules thought that its was the same girl every night, but Thespius had arranged it to be a different one each time. After fifty days, Hercules managed to kill the lion, and from then on he dressed himself in the skin and wore the gaping mouth as a helmet. Nine months later Thespius became the proud grandfather of not fifty, but fifty-one baby boys, because Thespius’ eldest daughter Procris had twin sons, Antileon and Hippeus.
— The Song of Songs (1853, 300x319 cm ; _ ZOOMable)
— The Scottish Horseman (1854, 145x145cm ; _ ZOOMable)
— Les Prétendants (1852, 385x343cm ; _ ZOOMable) _ detail (_ ZOOMable) _ Inspirée par le célèbre épisode du livre XXII de L'Odyssée dans lequel, à son retour d'Ithaque, Ulysse massacre les prétendants installés dans son palais, cette toile, retravaillée à plusieurs reprises, est la plus vaste que le peintre ait réalisée. Dans la salle du palais, Athéna, paraissant dans un halo éblouissant, domine la scène de la vengeance d'Ulysse, du massacre des princes qui courtisaient Pénélope pendant son absence. Le héros apparaît en armes au fond de la salle, à droite dans l'encadrement de la porte. Moreau note : "Et la lyre et le chant semblaient résonner encore au milieu de cette tempête de cris, de rage et de douleur. Et le bruit de la corde stridente de l'arc résonnait aussi d'une façon rythmique, quand la Minerve hirondelle eut dressé l'égide sanglante au plafond". Au fur et à mesure qu'il y travaille, Moreau peuple la toile de personnages nouveaux en ajoutant “cette scène toute matérielle de boucherie” des figures “ne prenant aucune part apparente au drame” afin de rappeler le spectateur à la beauté plastique. De la notion de “carnage épique”, l'auteur évolua vers un hommage à la beauté plastique masculine que souligne l'enchevêtrement des corps au premier plan.
— Orpheus aka Thracian Girl Carrying the Head of Orpheus (1864, 22x14cm ; _ ZOOMable)
— The Apparition (Dance of Salome) (1876, 105x72cm ; _ ZOOMable) _ detail (_ ZOOMable)
— Hercule et l'Hydre de Lerne (1869, 175x153cm; 1000x781pix, 217kb ; _ ZOOMable) _ This is the second of the 12 labors of Hercules.
— different but very similar Hercule et l'Hydre de Lerne (1876; 600x516pix _ ZOOM to 1400x1204pix)
— Saint Sébastien et l'Ange (1876, 68x39cm; 800x446pix, 210kb ; _ ZOOM as at top)
— Saint Sébastien (1869; 600x777pix, 218kb _ ZOOM to 1400x868pix) being cured by Saint Irene. Saint Sebastian was a martyr, but it is first in the art of the Renaissance that he is portrayed according to an absolutely unhistorical legend, according to which he was an officer in the Roman imperial bodyguard and had secretly done many acts of love and charity. When he was finally discovered to be a Christian, in 286, he was handed over to the Mauretanian archers, who pierced him with arrows; he was healed, however, by the widowed Saint Irene. He was finally killed by the blows of a club.
— La Vie de l'Humanité (1886; 600x372pix _ ZOOM to 1400x868pix) _ Ce polyptyque est composé de neuf panneaux (33x25cm) sur trois rangs superposés, surmontés d'une lunette en arc de cercle (corde 94cm) figurant le Christ ensanglanté. Cette ascension douloureuse et rédemptrice explique le sens des panneaux rectangulaires qui illustrent la destinée humaine selon Moreau. L'artiste a voulu exprimer les correspondances entre les âges de la vie, les saisons et les heures du jour. Le registre supérieur est consacré à l'âge d'or personnifié par Adam, symbolisant l'enfance: le matin la prière, le midi l'extase, le soir le sommeil. Le second registre figure l'âge d'argent ou la jeunesse incarnée par Orphée, et dans cette version, par Hésiode encadrant Orphée : Hésiode le matin, l'inspiration, Orphée le midi, le chant, Hésiode le soir, les larmes. L'âge de fer, enfin, se matérialise dans Caïn, symbolisant le maturité : le matin le travail, le midi le repos, le soir la mort.
Moreau commentait ainsi son œuvre: "Ces trois phases de l'humanité tout entière correspondent aussi aux trois phases de la vie de l'homme: la pureté de l'enfance: Adam. Les aspirations poétiques et douloureuses de la jeunesse : Orphée. Les souffrances pénibles et la mort pour l'âge viril: Caïn - Avec la rédemption du Christ". Le décor bucolique évoque le cadre champêtre des montagnes d'Hésiode, pasteur dans les montagnes, qui devint poète par nécessité morale. Orphée apparaît, quant à lui, adossé à deux colonnes symbole de la proportion, de la maîtrise, de la culture. Tendant le bras, il déclame devant les animaux charmés par son chant et inspirés par la muse Melpomène. Sur le troisième panneau, Hésiode est en larmes. On distingue la muse qui vient de l'abandonner. Emportant sa lyre dans l'éther. Adossé à un arbre, au bord de la mer, il pleure la perte de son inspiration.
Moreau a-t-il voulu évoquer par ce rapprochement de la côte grecque et du manque d'inspiration le rejet par Hésiode de l'épopée et des exploits maritimes de la mythologie grecque ? Quoiqu'il en soit, le polyptyque entier porte aussi une autre signification. En effet, l'idée originale trouve sa source dans un polyptyque jamais achevé, dont Moreau eut l'idée en 1871, et qui se serait intitulée La France vaincue. On pourrait s'étonner, par ailleurs que Moreau, entre deux personnages de la Genèse, Adam et Caïn, ait cru bon de faire figurer Orphée, un dieu païen. Il voyait dans Orphée le vrai porteur d'espoir, convaincu qu'il était “extrêmement ingénieux et intelligent d'avoir pris pour le cycle de la jeunesse et de la poésie une figure de l'Antiquité païenne au lieu d'une figure biblique, parce que l'intelligence et la poésie sont bien mieux personnifiées dans ces époques tout entières d'art et d'imagination que dans la Bible, toute de sentiment et de religiosité”.
Hélène sur les ramparts de Troie (1895; 1137x564pix, 159kb _ ZOOM to 1400x672pix) _ Ce tableau “représente Hélène, debout, droite, vêtue d'une robe incrustée de pierreries comme une châsse; tenant à la main, de même que la dame de pique des jeux de cartes, une grande fleur; marchant les yeux larges ouverts, fixe, dans une pose cataleptique. A ses pieds gisent des amas de cadavres percés de flèches, et, de son auguste beauté blonde, elle domine le carnage, majestueuse et superbe comme la Salammbô apparaissant aux mercenaires, semblable à une divinité malfaisante qui empoisonne, sans même qu'elle en ait conscience, tout ce qui l'approche ou tout ce qu'elle regarde et touche.” (J.~K. Huysmans, L'Art Moderne) _ Hélène est vêtue de robes cousues de joyaux; d'une raideur de statue, sa verticalité accentuée par les murs de l'arrière-plan, elle tient une fleur et domine un amas de jeunes guerriers morts, transpercés de flèches. L'oeuvre rejoint la série des figures féminines peintes par Moreau trônant au-dessus de leurs victimes, une fleur à la main en guise de sceptre (il peint ainsi aussi bien la Vierge que Cléopâtre, la Sirène ou le Sphinx).
Jules Laforgue wrote this sonnet about a very similar 1880 painting by Moreau, which was lost in 1913.
SUR L'HÉLÈNE DE GUSTAVE MOREAU
Frêle sous ses bijoux, à pas lents, et sans voir
Tous ces beaux héros morts, dont pleurent les fiancées,
Devant l'horizon vaste ainsi que ses pensées
Hélène vient songer dans la douceur du soir.
«Qui donc es-tu, Toi qui sèmes le désespoir?»
Hélène cependant parcourt d'un regard morne
Entends! Quel long sanglot
vers nos Lois éternelles!»
Born on 18 April 1884: Ludwig
Meidner, German Expressionist
painter, draftsman, graphic artist, writer, and teacher, who died on 14
— He was born into a middle-class Jewish family during the late Wilhelmine period, and his parents wanted him to pursue a profession more practical than an artistic one. Nonetheless, while apprenticed to a bricklayer in 1901, Meidner produced highly accomplished pen-and-ink drawings. Their imagery reveals his attempts to align his Jewish heritage with that of modern-day Christianity and Socialism, an intellectual preoccupation that was to remain consistent throughout his career (e.g. Ibn Esra, 1901). In 1903 he studied at the Königliche Akademie in Breslau (now Wroclaw, Poland) and in 1905 moved to Berlin where, to earn a living, he designed advertisements for furriers. A stipend from an aunt enabled him to visit Paris between 1905 and 1907. There he met Modigliani, briefly attended the Académie Julian and Académie Cormon and generally broadened his experience of city life. Nonetheless, his correspondence at that time reveals his preference for Berlin, the ‘struggling, earnest burgeoning city...the world’s intellectual and moral capital’ (letter to Franz Landsberger, 03 Jan 1907).
— Born in Bernstadt, Prussia, into a middle class Jewish family, Ludwig Meidner pursued a career as an artist, though his parents wanted him to choose a more practical career, studying at the Breslau Academy in 1903 and then moving to Berlin two years later, where he designed advertisements to support himself. He later visited Paris, briefly attending the Académie Julian and the Académie Cormon and enjoying the experience of city life. His preference for Berlin brought him back to that city in 1908, where he frequented the Café des Westerns, participating in the avant-garde life of the city while struggling to make a living. In 1912, together with Jacob Steinhardt and Richard Janthur, he founded a group of artists and writers called Die Pathetiker, whose works were exhibited at Herwarth Walden's gallery Der Sturm. Between 1912 and 1916, after being drafted into the army, he began painting a series of apocalyptic landscapes, which showed cities in states of collapse or destruction. His works from the 1920s include a series that focused on Jewish themes - a consistent preoccupation of Meidner's throughout his career, as he sought to reconcile his Jewish heritage with modern day Christianity and Socialism. From 1935 to 1939, he served as the master at a Jewish High School in Cologne, until Nazi persecution forced him to move to England. With the rise of Nazism, Meidner came under attack and 84 of his paintings were seized from German museums. One of his self-portraits was placed in the "Jewish Gallery" of the infamous "Degenerate Art" exhibition held in Munich in 1937. He returned to Germany in 1953, and lived there until his death in Darmstadt in 1966.
— Born Bernstadt (Silesia); died Darmstadt; studied at the Breslau Academy 1903-1905; studied at the Académie Julian in Paris 1906-1907; founder of Die Pathetiker, a group that exhibited at the Sturm gallery in Berlin in 1912; in 1924-1925 he taught at the Studienateliers (Study Workshops) for painting and sculpture in Berlin; from 1935-1939 he was drawing master at the Jewish Hochschule in Cologne; in 1939 he fled to England where he was interned 1940-1941; he returned to Germany in 1953, first to Frankfurt then Darmstadt.
— Mein Nachtgesicht (1913; 600x424pix _ ZOOM to 1400x989pix)
— Ich und die Stadt (1913; 600x476pix _ ZOOM to 1400x1111pix)
— Selbstporträt (1938; 600x468pix _ ZOOM to 1400x1092pix)
— Selbstporträt (1965; 600x472pix _ ZOOM to 1400x1101pix)
— Max Hermann-Neiße (600x416pix _ ZOOM to 1400x971pix) _ portrait of a man collapsed into a chair, seemingly in deep depression. Max Hermann-Neiße [1886-1941] was a lyricist. Georg Grosz [26 Jul 1893 – 06 Jul 1959] painted a somewhat similar Max Hermann-Neiße, (386x400pix, 53kb) which is probably a better likeness.
— Max Hermann-Neiße (1913, 90x76cm; 112x93pix, 9kb) _ detail (700x522pix, 75kb) his deformed hands.
— Max Hermann-Neiße (600x758pix _ ZOOM to 1400x1768pix, 671kb) _ a colorful abstract picture perhaps suggesting an anatomical cross-section.
— Johannes R. Becher (600x748pix _ ZOOM to 1400x1745pix, 858kb) _ a slightly less colorful abstract picture perhaps somewhat more suggestive of human and bovine bodies.
Apokaliptische Landschaft (1913, 67x80cm _ ZOOM to 1400x2072pix)
— The Last Day (1916, 100x150cm) _ Meidner painted this visionary landscape shortly before he began serving in the German Army in World War I. In it, he expresses extreme feelings of fear concerning his future. He lets his fear run free in this dark and apocalyptic vision. The bombing crater in the center of the picture pushes the people to the edge of their own existence. It is interesting that Meidner shows different characterizations of traumatized figures; some of them seem caught up in the hopelessness of the situation. They seem to be immobilized by the shock, helplessly exposed to fate. Other fleeing figures would also seem to be frozen in their movements. This repeated theme of paralysis would seem to imply that even in the act of memorializing the event one can not escape its aftermath.
Died on 18 April 1684: Gonzales
Coques (or Cockes, Cocx, Cox), Flemish painter specialized
in portraits, baptized as an infant on 08 December 1614. [Ce n'est
pas lui qui a inventé les ufs à la Coques?]
— The artist’s name is in a baptismal register for the year 1614; however, an inscription on an engraved self-portrait of 1649 gives 1618 as his year of birth, and in 1666 he himself claimed to be 48. His name is listed in the archives of Antwerp’s Guild of St Luke for 1627–1628, the year he became a student of Pieter Brueghel II. Later he studied with David Rijckaert II. Coques was admitted to the painters’ guild as an independent master only in 1640–41, this long delay suggesting that he traveled. He may have gone to England, for he was later given the nickname ‘Little van Dyck’, referring to the perceived influence on his work of Anthony van Dyck, who was in England after 1632.
In 1643 Coques married his teacher’s daughter Catharina Rijckaert [1610–1674], by whom he had two daughters. His second wife, whom he married in 1675, was Catharina Rysheuvels; they had no children. Coques was a respected member of the artistic community in Antwerp: he was twice deacon of the Guild of St Luke, was a member of two rhetoricians’ societies and in 1661 was praised by Cornelis de Bie, in whose book there is an engraved portrait of him. An accomplished portrait painter, he was greatly influenced by Rubens and van Dyck, although his figures were generally on a smaller scale, and he enjoyed the patronage of successive Governor Generals of the Netherlands. He died in Antwerp on 18 April 1684. Two of his students were Cornelis van den Bosch in 1643 and Lenaert Frans Verdussen in 1665–1666.
— The Art Writer Cornelis de Bie (600x496pix _ ZOOM to 1400x1157pix) _ Cornelis de Bie [10 Feb 1627 – >1711] was a notary in his native town of Lier who wrote Het Gulden Cabinet van de edel vry schilderconst inhoudende den Lof vande vermarste schilders, architecte, beldhowers ende plaetsnyders van dese eeuw (1661), a series of biographies and panegyrics on most South Netherlandish painters, sculptors, and architects of the 17th and late 16th centuries.
— A Lawyer (600x468pix _ ZOOM to 1400x1092pix)
— A Married Couple in a Park (600x436pix _ ZOOM to 1400x1017pix)
— Smell (Portrait of Lucas Fayd'herbe) (<1661) _ The sitter is Lucas Fayd'herbe [1617-1697], a noted sculptor and architect who was one of Rubens's last students. He worked principally in Malines, and is also depicted in Frachoijs Portrait of Lucas Fayd'herbe. Here he is shown smoking a pipe, as a representation of the sense of Smell. This picture is one of a series of the 'Five Senses'; the fifth, 'Taste', is probably a copy. The series was painted before 1661 when Sight was engraved. The costumes suggest a date of about 1655-1660.
— Sight (Portrait of Robert van den Hoecke) (<1661) _ Robert van den Hoeke [1622-1668], was a painter and engraver who worked in Antwerp and in Brussels. He became 'Contrôleur des fortifications' in Flanders and the plan, baldric (belt hung over the shoulder) and sword presumably refer to this office. The identification of the sitter is dependent upon the inscription on an engraving of the portrait by Cauckercken, which appeared in a book published in 1661.
Died on 18 April 1941: Eugène Gallien-Laloue,
“Eugène Galien-Laloue”, Jacques Liévin, “Léon
Dupuy”, “Eugenio Galiani”, French painter born on 11 December
— Some artists or writers are content to have a pseudonym so as to disguise their work. Eugène Galien Laloue was particularly adept at establishing several identities, since over the course of his career he worked under three pseudonyms: J. Lievin – after a soldier he met during the Franco-Prussian war, E. Galiany – an Italianized version of his own names, and L. Dupuy – after Léon Dupuy who lived in his same area. While these are three confirmed names that he used, there is the possibility that he used other names as well. Even his name “Galien” is questionable, since on occasion he spelled it with one “l” and on his birth certificate it is spelled “Gallien”. Why the artist went to such great lengths to perplex audiences and historians is the question that remains to be answered. Despite preoccupation with the reclusive nature of this man, he depicted Paris and the surrounding landscape with his cool palette; in doing so he became another recorder of popular Parisian life. He balanced his architectural interest in Paris with several landscape views and was an equally if not more proficient draftsman.
He was born in Montmartre, the oldest of eventually nine children. His father, Charles, died when he was sixteen years old, after which point his mother, Endoxie, found him a job at the local notary. He left school to fill the position. But shortly after he felt the nationalistic urge to enlist in the military. Quitting his job and faking his name in 1871, he left for his military duty which led him through the end of the Franco-Prussian war of 1870-1871. By then he had decided to become a painter. For such an eager participant in the military, to turn immediately to painting must have been a reaction against the bloody events of the Franco-Prussian war; a way to forget what he had seen. In 1874 he was employed by the French Railway lines as an illustrator, depicting the rail track that was being laid from Paris to the provinces. Concurrently he began painting the surrounding landscapes as well.
While practical, this was unusual “training” for a young art student. His artistic training seemed to come via his other jobs. He exhibited for the first time in 1876 at the Museum of Reims, showing Le quai aux fleurs par la neige. The following year he exhibited for the first time at the annual Parisian Salon, showing En Normandie as well as two gouaches. He preferred painting gouaches since they were less time consuming than his oils and brought comparable prices. At this time his teacher was listed as being M.C. Laloue, Claude Laloue, perhaps his late father who would have taught him a more academic approach or an uncle.
From the beginning of his career and perhaps spurred by his travels along the railway lines, Galien Laloue became interested in showing the natural environment. While not uncommon, it was perhaps an interesting theme for an artist who did not necessarily seek to connect with nature and while painting en plein-air, he hated to walk in any mud and even a blade of grass bothered him. He had a reclusive personality, which also may explain the reasons behind his numerous pseudonyms. He preferred the solitariness of his studio and thus did not paint his works entirely on-site. Unlike many other artists as well, he did not like to travel and many of his views of other cities or countries were inspired by postcards and photographs, an increasing tendency with many artists as photography became a more established method of use. He was not eccentric but always conservative, practically a royalist. He was obsessed with his painting. In his private life he found simplicity alluring: he married three sisters, one after the other (beginning with the youngest and ending with the oldest). They had all lived next door to him. He lived a monastic life. All worldly pursuits, games, alcohol, the pleasure of the flesh were not for him. Riding his bicycle to places in Paris to paint was his only physical exercise.
His personality kept him at a distance from his contemporaries who were working in his same manner. He was more concerned with the sale of his paintings, of which he kept scrupulous notes but still sold each painting for the same price. He was an active participant in the annual Parisian Salons until 1889 where he exhibited two gouaches Bernay (Bernay), and Bords de la Meuse (Banks of the Meuse). After this point he took a five year sabbatical, during which time his daughter was born; he returned to the exhibition in 1904 with Le Boulevard Bonne Nouvelle. He also was submitting his works to exhibitions in Angers and Saint Quentin, where his work received the following review): “Once again we mention Mr. Eugène Galien Laloue for his lovely gouaches, as full as oils, which show most picturesquely the popular quarters of Paris.” During the first two decades of the twentieth century he also exhibited at Dijon, Orléans, Versailles, Roubaix, Saint Etienne, Bordeaux, Monte Carlo, Hautecoeur, among several other cities.
As World War I broke out, he was exempt from military service because he had volunteered for the Franco-Prussian war. He was too old to take part in the war. Instead, he took to his canvas and depicted scenes of soldiers in the midst of battle, paying close attention to the setting and other details such as their costumes and the action of their involvement. His own previous military experience must have inspired his depictions, since in his military scenes his figures are given a more prominent role than in either his Parisian scenes or his landscape paintings. He identified with these soldiers.
Galien Laloue continued to paint until 1940, when he broke the arm with which he held his brush. Despite his reluctance to integrate himself with others, his paintings offer a record of late nineteenth and early twentieth century Paris, focusing not so much on the relationship between its citizens, but more so on the architectural aspects of the city. He moved out of Paris many times to depict the landscapes of Normandy and the surroundings of Barbizon, making his home for a short time in Fontainebleau. While his Parisian scenes were often of the fall and winter, he preferred to document the landscape during the brighter months of spring and summer. He also documented life along the canals and banks of the sea and rivers, showing an interest in maritime exploits. He had become very popular with both French and especially American artists and continued to paint the same scenes of Paris throughout his career. He died in his daughter’s house in Chérence, where they had taken refuge at the beginning of the Second World War.
— LINKS cm
— A Busy Boulevard Under Snow at Porte Saint-Martin, Paris (31x18cm)
— Figures in the Snow, Paris (28x20cm)
— Paris in Winter (19x31cm)
— La Madeleine (18x31cm)
— The Arc de Triomphe, Paris (27x35cm)
— The Grands Boulevards, Paris aka On a Grand Boulevard at Dusk (18x30cm)
— Vue de l'Assemblée Nationale et du Pont de la Concorde, Paris (26x45cm)
— Les Forges d'Ivry (1894, 49x65cm)
— A Paris Street Scene (39x55cm)
— Animation près de la Porte Saint-Denis
— Arc de Triomphe (19x31cm)
— La Bourse, Paris (20x31cm)
— La Place Saint-Michel (25x33cm)
— Le Louvre et la Passerelle des Arts (20x32cm)
— Les Quais de Paris (1854x1941cm)
— Lunch on a Terrace With a View of the Bay of Naples (47x65cm)
— Place de la République, Paris (18x31cm)
— Pont sur la Seine avec une vue sur l'ancien Trocadéro (48x65cm) almost monochrome
— Shipping In The Docks (38x56cm)
— Foire aux Pains d'Épices, La Nation (19x32cm)
— Usine dans un port (22x27cm; 258x320pix, 10kb)
— (Paysage: un village) (359x500pix, 155kb)
— Jour d'automne aux Champs-Élysées (287x483pix, 50kb)