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BURIAL:  1680 VAN BOL — DEATHS:  1842 COTMAN   — 1802 DUCREUX 
BIRTHS: 1848 PRADILLA — 1860 MUCHA — 1871 BALLA — 1927 KATZ
^ Born on 24 July 1848: Francisco Pradilla y Ortiz, Spanish Realist painter and museum official, who died on 01 November 1921.
— He first studied in Saragossa under the stage designer Mariano Pescador [–1886], and in 1866 moved to Madrid where he began to work under the stage designers and decorators Ferri and Busato. He entered the Escuela Superior de Pintura, Escultura, y Grabado and also attended the Academia de Acuarelistas. In 1873 Pradilla and his fellow student Casto Plasencia [1846–1890] won history painting scholarships to study at the newly founded Academia Española de Bellas Artes in Rome. In 1874 he sent from Rome a copy of Raphael’s Dispute over the Holy Sacrament, a work Pradilla completed in collaboration with Alejandro Ferrant [1844–], another Spanish scholarship holder.
      During Pradilla’s second and third years abroad he traveled through France, visiting the Paris Exposition Universelle of 1875, and Italy, where he was particularly impressed by Venice and the works of Veronese, Titian and Jacopo Tintoretto. Pradilla won a major prize in 1878 at the Exposición Nacional de Bellas Artes in Madrid; as a result of this success he received the commission for another large picture on a historical theme, The Surrender of Granada (1882) for the Palacio del Senado (now Palacio de las Cortes) in Madrid. This work shows Pradilla’s concern to paint from life in his treatment of the landscape of Granada. He produced other paintings on related subjects, including Mad Queen Joanna Imprisoned at Tordesillas and The Sigh of the Moor . Pradilla also painted lively scenes of local life and color. The years of his stay in Rome, where he was director of the Academia Española between 1881 and 1883, allowed him to get to know the country around Rome and many other places in Italy. Such scenes as Dance on the Beach at Anzio, Italian Pilgrims on the Way to the Shrine and The Month of the Grape Harvest (Pontine Marshes) vividly convey his enthusiasm and affection for Italy and the Italians.

— Pradilla y Ortiz nació en Villanueva de Gállego (Zaragoza) y murió en Madrid. Inició sus estudios en Zaragoza, simultaneando las clases en la Real Academia de Bellas Artes de San Luis con la asistencia al taller del escenógrafo Mariano Pescador. Ignoramos las circuntancias familiares que lo obligaron a abandonar en 1861 los estudios de bachillerato, en los que destacaba, para ponerse a trabajar. Desde luego, no se trata de la orfandad a la que se ha aludido en ocasiones, toda vez que sus padres vivían aún a finales de la década de los setenta del siglo pasado.
      Poco tiempo después, realiza su primera decoración firmada: la de la ópera de Meyerbeer Los Hugonotes, bien que no sepamos si realizó los bocetos para lo ópera completa (era frecuente aprovechar decorados de producciones anteriores, o bien de otras obras con lugares similares) o, siquiera, si se conservan tales materiales.
      En 1866, se traslada a Madrid, donde continúa trabajando con pintores dedicados al teatro, como son Ferri y Bussato mientras se aloja en casa de unos familiares. Al mismo tiempo, asiste a clases en la Escuela Superior de Pintura y Grabado, en la que recibirá las enseñanzas de Federico de Madrazo, Carlos Luis de Ribera y Ponciano Ponzano. Asimismo, forma parte de la recién creada Asociación de Acuarelistas de Madrid y cultiva con esmero y dedicación la dicha técnica tanto en las clases nocturnas de la Asociación como en el taller del pintor Ramón Guerrero.
      En compañía de éste, realizará varios viajes entre 1871 y 1873 por Galicia para copiar paisajes. En uno de éstos será cuando conozca a la que años más tarde será su mujer. Al tiempo, sus acuarelas comienzan a interesar a los coleccionistas de Madrid. Al crearse en 1873 la Academia Española de Bellas Artes de Roma, es pensionado (junto con Casto Plasencia).
      En los años de estancia en Roma, trabaja como corresponsal de La Ilustración Española y Americana y lleva a cabo buen número de pinturas como El Naufragio (estudio de desnudo enviado desde allí como trabajo de pensionado que no está entre lo mejor de su producción, aunque destaquen de él el paisaje del fondo y el contraste que se establece entre las dos figuras; el cuadro forma hoy parte de los fondos del Ayuntamiento de Madrid), los retratos de Alfonso I "El Batallador" y Alfonso V "El Magnánimo" para el Ayuntamiento de Zaragoza. Sin embargo, será sobre todo la conocidísima Doña Juana la Loca la obra principal de este período. Por ella obtendrá la medalla de honor en la Exposición Nacional de 1878. La medalla de honor no se otorgaba todos los años y sólo la obtenía un pintor. La que obtuvo Pradilla fue la primera que se otorgó desde que se crearan las Exposiciones en 1856. En el mismo 1878, el cuadro es premiado en la Universal de París y alabado en las de Viena y Berlín. El cuadro es muestra del trabajo de taller que se realizaba en la época: el fondo pertenece a las cercanías de lago Tresimeno en Pasignano (Italia) y los detalles de vestuario y mobiliario están cuidados a la perfección, en tanto que en las hogueras y antorchas, así como en el grupo de frailes que avanza por la izquierda, se acerca Pradilla a la técnica impresionista con la utilización de manchas de color que sugieren la lejanía de los monjes y la dispersión del humo (no olvidemos la importancia que para el autor tenía, en general, el fuego; en el presente caso, se conserva un estudio de pequeño tamaño dedicado tan sólo al efecto del fuego y del humo sobre el cielo del fondo que resulta, en el cuadro acabado, uno de sus mayores aciertos). Al tiempo, los rostros de los personajes reflejan cuidadosamente el pensamiento, desde el enajenamiento de la reina hasta el aburrimiento o el cansancio, casi insolente en algún caso, de los servidores. Con todo ello, se aleja Pradilla de la pintura histórica al uso para llevar a cabo una aproximación realista al tema histórico. Al tiempo, el contraste entre los ropajes y actitudes de los personajes y el desolado paisaje invernal logran hacer más patente el dolor y el enajenamiento.
      El interés en el tema de la reina loca de amor, que había de ocupar a varios otros pintores y a dramaturgos como Tamayo y Baus, se muestra en un boceto titulado Doña Juana "la Loca" en los adarves del Castillo de la Mota de sus primeros años y en la pintura de una Doña Juana "la Loca" recluida en Tordesillas, que procede de su última época y en la que el desvalimiento de la reina se expresa a través de la selección de colores fríos, a los que ayuda el foco de luz invernal que ilumina la figura por la izquierda. La mirada perdida y los objetos cotidianos colocados en el hueco de la ventana contribuyen a la impresión de intimidad sorprendida que desprende toda la figura. Como en el resto de su producción histórica, mucho más breve que lo que su fama en este género pudiera hacer pensar, la preocupación fundamental de Pradilla es recrear el momento a través de la expresión de los personajes que lo protagonizaron.
      Tras el éxito de Doña Juana "la Loca", recibe el encargo de pintar La Rendición de Granada, obra también sobradamente conocida, para la decoración del Palacio del Senado, donde se exhibe todavía. Los dos cuadros mencionados convierten de inmediato a Pradilla en uno de los pintores de historia más conocidos y reputados. La Rendición le valió, además, la Gran Cruz de Isabel la Católica.
      La Rendición
es un cuadro más estático que Doña Juana, en buena medida por el propio tema y por la cantidad de personajes conocidos que debían aparecer en él (los propios Reyes Católicos, Boabdil, el príncipe don Juan, el Gran Capitán, el inquisidor Torquemada, etc.). Con todo, Pradilla dio buena muestra de su talento en la elección de diferentes colores para los principales personajes, así como en la inclusión de detalles que, como en el caso de los cortesanos de Doña Juana, prestan variedad a la escena. destaca en este respecto la expresión del Gran Capitán, que bromea con las damas de la reina a las que va escoltando. Los rostros de las damas, sorprendidos en mitad de la conversación, está también claramente independizados unos de otros. En el fondo de la escena, el paisaje granadino, estudiado a fondo por el pintor en el propio escenario, presenta unos toques naturalistas que alejan de nuevo la obra de Pradilla de los cuadros de asunto histórico habituales en el momento.
      Una tercera pintura histórica de gran formato fue El Suspiro del Moro en la que de nuevo se ocupó Fradilla de la toma de Granada, bien que en este caso desde la perspectiva del Boabdil desterrado que da a su ciudad la última mirada. El cuadro fue resultado de un encargo particular — aunque algunas fuentes señalen erróneamente que el encargo partió del Ateneo madrileño — realizado por un magnate ruso y, a la muerte de éste, de otro chileno que, a su vez, cedió los derechos a un tercero con el que discutió el pintor, enojado por no habérsele tenido en cuenta para la transacción. Hoy se desconoce el para dero de este cuadro, que por sus dimensiones resulta difícil de esconder, bien que conservemos de él reproducción fotográfica que muestra la sobriedad de la composición, en la que Boabdil, de espaldas y vestido de blanco, observa desde un alto su ciudad. El centro de la composición lo ocupa un caballo blanco, el de Boabdil, sujeto por un criado, cuyas crines agita el mismo viento que mueve las vestiduras del último rey de Granada.
      Entre 1881 y 1883, fue director de la Academia de Roma, bien que a regañadientes, pues su temperamento arisco y huidizo lo hacían poco apto para dicho puesto. Tras cesar en el cargo con una excusa fútil, permanece en la capital italiana hasta 1897, año en el que acepta la dirección del Museo del Prado y regresa a España. Son los años en los que se afianza su amistad con Joaquín Sorolla, que se había establecido en Italia tras concluir su pensionado en la Academia. Su labor pictórica es constante. La exposición de la Academia de Roma de 1884 exhibe su Corte de Aragón celebrando juegos florales. Otros cuadros de esta época son Vendimiadores en las lagunas Pontinas, El camino del santuario o Escenas Venecianas.
      En 1886, una quiebra económica acaba con su tranquilidad: deberá volver a pintar para rehacer su situación y mantener a su familia. La correspondencia con Sorolla nos da testimonio de sus preocupaciones en este tiempo. A su regreso, permanece poco tiempo en la dirección del Prado, en la que sustituía a Palmaroli. Su gestión tampoco parece haber sido particularmente buena: dejó escapar algún fondo de interés que salió a la venta en aquel tiempo a buen precio y hubo de sufrir algún robo en la pinacoteca por parte de personal de la casa.
      Tras abandonar el cargo, se instaló en Madrid y se dedicó a la pintura, lo único que verdaderamente le importaba, hasta su muerte. Sus últimos años los pasó casi aislado: no acudía a actos públicos y rechazaba cuantas invitaciones recibía. La situación de su taller, en lo que entonces eran las afueras de Madrid, contribuía a este aislamiento que, de ningún modo, supuso abandono de los pinceles. Muy al contrario, se sabe que aún cinco días antes de morir tuvo sesión con cinco modelos.
      Su pintura estuvo muy cotizada en su momento, hasta el extremo de que su nombre fue utilizado, sin su consentimiento, para las ilustraciones de una edición de lujo de las Leyendas de Zorrilla. Fue miembro de las reales academias de Bellas Artes de San Fernando de Madrid y de San Luis de Zaragoza, de la Academia Francesa y de la Hispanic Society de Nueva York. Asimismo, se le concedieron la a citada Gran Cruz de Isabel la Católica y la Legión de Honor con rango de Caballero. Debido a haber obtenido en su primera presencia en la Exposición Nacional el galardón más alto, sólo concurrió a otra más, la de 1892, en la que se exhibió La Rendición de Granada con motivo de la celebración del cuarto centenario de dicho acontecimiento. Parece que el talante solitario del pintor fue el motivo principal de este apartamiento de las Exposiciones Nacionales, en las que no eran infrecuentes los favoritismos y los enfrentamientos dentro de los jurados.
      Asimismo, declinó la oferta que se le hizo de participar en la decoración de San Francisco el Grande, una de las obras pictóricas a las que más importancia se dio en aquel momento, argumentando que estaba pintando La Rendición en Italia y que no podía trasladarse a Madrid para pintar al fresco una de las bóvedas. Por parte de los encargados de la decoración, debemos constatar que no insistieron en la presencia de Pradilla, mejor pintor de historia que casi todos los que llevaron a cabo la mencionada decoración.
      Sirva como botón de muestra de su éxito internacional el éxito cosechado en la Exposición Universal de Berlín, en la que fue el único español premiado, donde obtuvo la medalla de honor por Misa al aire libre en la romería de la Guía (Vigo). Asimismo, en 1892 fue nombrado miembro honorario de la Academia de Pintura de Munich. Su éxito fue grande tanto en España como en el resto de Europa y sigularmente en Alemania, donde su obra paisajística (lo más abundante de su producción) fue en su tiempo preferida a la de los impresionistas franceses y donde se lo reputó por uno de los mejores paisajistas de Europa.
      La producción de Pradilla es ingente (varios millares incluyendo apuntes y bocetos, tal y como señaló su hijo) y en ella destacan, junto con los cuadros de pintura histórica, convertidos en imágenes canónicas de los hechos de la historia española que muestran, multitud de cuadros de pequeño formato pintados del natural en los que con frecuencia se limita a plasmar un detalle (una luz, un cielo tormentoso, sensaciones de color, etc.), casi como si pretendiera utilizar el material para obras de mayor envergadura, así el mencionado estudio del fuego para Doña Juana "la Loca".
      Con frecuencia, tomaba apuntes del natural durante una temporada en zonas que le gustaban especialmente (así las Lagunas Pontinas cerca de Roma o el Monasterio de Piedra en Zaragoza) para luego elaborar los cuadros en el estudio. es el caso de cuadros como La lectura de Anacreonte o bién Pasando el arroyo, pertenecientes a su última época o de Emigrantes de otoño en el País Pontino, de su etapa romana.
      Asimismo fue destacado retratista (así el sobrio y bellísimo Retrato de Lidia Pradilla) y colaboró en decoraciones como la del madrileño palacio de los marqueses de Linares, hoy Casa de América, para el que llevó a cabo catorce pinturas en lienzo que, según la costumbre de la época, se fijaban después al muro. Los avatares de este palacio, cerrado y deshabitado durante años, ha permitido conservar un conjunto decorativo que de otro modo hubiera perecido como sucedió con los realizados en los palacios de los duques de Santoña o la infanta Isabel, sujetos al cambio de las modas decorativas.
      El éxito de Pradilla hizo que su obra se dispersara por Europa y América, lo que ha hecho infructuosas todas las tentativas de establecer un catálogo completo de su producción. En este respecto, es destacable la imposibilidad de hallar el paradero de cuadros de la envergadura de El último Suspiro del Moro ya comentado. A pesar de la utilización casi constante del óleo en el estudio y de su negativa a pintar el fresco, destacó Pradilla por su experimentalismo técnico, en especial en lo que al campo de la acuarela se refiere. Asimismo, destacó por su control poco común del dibujo. Partiendo del último Románticismo, Pradilla va a asimilar las innovaciones de los impresionistas y el preciosismo de la pintura italiana a su propio estilo.
^
Juana la Loca–- Doña Juana “La Loca” ante el féretro de Felipe el Hermoso (340x500cm) _ Doña Juana “La Loca” _ Pradilla did several representations of Juana la Loca [< here is one]; many other 19th Century painters did the same. Within the historical trend of this century's painting, the insane Castilian princess was a common model. Felipe el HermosoThis painting captures a moment when the princess' entourage take a break during the long march she undertook to transfer the body of her deceased husband, The Archduke Philip "The Handsome" [portrait by Pradilla >]. Her insanity, accentuated over a long period by jealousy, moved her to undertake this journey (from Burgos to Granada, where she wished to bury her husband) only traveling by night because "an honest woman should flee from the light of day when she has lost her husband, who was the sun". During the day, the casket was kept at monasteries along the way, although in this painting we see a convent of nuns rather than a monastery of monks as should have been the case: Juana made them take the casket out of the church though, because she was jealous of woman's eye being set upon her departed husband.
_     Después de la muerte de Isabel en 1504, su hija Juana, que padeció esquizofrenia, junto con su marido Felipe, Archiduque de Austria, ascendieron al trono. La pareja había estado viviendo en Bruselas pero después se mudaron a Burgos en la primavera de 1506. Felipe se conocía como Felipe el Hermoso y fue famoso por sus infidelidades. Con todas sus aventuras amorosas, la estabilidad mental de Juana empeoró. La leyenda dice que Juana, que estaba loca de celos, atacó con una navaja a unos de sus propias damas de honor con quien creyó que Felipe estaba teniendo relaciones amorosas, y pidió que se cortara todo su pelo. Desde entonces, solo se permitió que las mujeres atendieran en el palacio.
      Felipe murió después de una enfermedad corta, aunque algunos siguen creyendo que su suegro le envenenó Juana se volvía cada día más loca después de la muerte de su marido, y perdió el juicio (de ahí su apodo de Juana la Loca). Por consiguiente, su padre reinó como regente hasta su muerte en 1516. Juana creía que su marido resucitaría y lo puso en dos ataúdes: uno de plomo dentro de uno de madera. En diciembre, decidió llevarlo a la catedral de Granada para enterarlo junto a su madre Isabel. El cortejo fúnebre salió desde Flandes acompañado por un grupo de músicos, y algunos cortesanos y damas de honor. Andaban por la noche, porque creyó que "una mujer honesta debe de huir de la luz de día, cuando ha perdido a su marido que era su sol", y cada de vez en cuando abrieron el ataúd para que Juana pudiera besar la cara de Felipe. La procesión se detendría en los monasterios para que se pudieran celebrar misas fúnebres para su marido muerte. Desafortunadamente, una vez cometieron el error de parase en un convento y Juana, horrorizado al pensar que unas mujeres vieran a su marido muerto, ordenó que se salieran inmediatamente. El cuadro de Pradilla Ortiz muestra uno de los descansos que tomó el cortejo fúnebre. Nunca llegaron a Granada ya que Juana fue declarada demente y encarcelada en Tordesillas, donde quedó hasta su muerte en 1555.
An Elegant Lady In Court Costume, With A Ruff, Full-length (29x21cm; 1000x696pix, 236kb) {Does it make you think of a barking dog, because it looks like a rough ruff?}

 
^ >Born on 24 July 1860: Alfons Maria “Alphonse” Mucha, Czech Art Nouveau painter, illustrator, poster artist, and designer.
— Trained at Art Academies in Prague and Munich. Settled in Paris in 1890 where he was one of the chief creators of the Art Noveau style. Noted for his posters of idealized female figures.
— He embodied turn-of-the-century art. A wealthy patron enabled him to study at the Munich Academy, then, in 1887, at the Académie Julian. He was an illustrator for several magazines and newspapers. In 1894, his first poster for Sarah Bernhardt won him considerable renown. In 1904 he went to the United States. In 1911 he returned to Prague to devote himself to an oeuvre celebrating the epic of Slav history. Mucha's fame was owed to his very personal style of drawing, which was both elegant and supple, giving a slender, sophisticated vision of Woman. His taste for curved and intertwined forms combined with a wild proliferation of plant life was expressed in some of the most celebrated posters of his time.
     Mucha was among the first to be arrested by the Gestapo when the Germans invaded Czechoslovakia in 1939. He was questioned and allowed to return home but his health was impaired by the ordeal. On 14 July 1939 Mucha died in Prague. Despite the Nazis banning the public from his funeral, over 100'000 Czechs attended it.
Frederic Milton Grant was a student of Mucha.

LINKS
Self-portrait (1907, 44x28cm) half-length, holding brushes and palette.
Heraldic Chivalry (89x136cm; _ ZOOMable to 1531x2000pix, 557kb)
Jaroslava (1920, 60x73cm; _ ZOOMable)
Autumn (1896; _ ZOOMable to 1605x814pix, 280kb)
F. Champenois Imprimeur-Editeur (1897, 73x55cm; _ ZOOMable)
Fruit (1897, 66x44cm; _ ZOOMable)
Monaco Monte Carlo (1897, 108x75cm; _ ZOOMable)
Médée (1898, 206x76cm; _ ZOOMable) poster for the play at Théâtre de la Renaissance, starring Sarah Bernhardt.
Hamlet (1899, 206x76cm; _ ZOOMable) poster for the play at Théâtre Sarah Bernhardt, starring Sarah Bernhardt.
Lorenzaccio (1896, 206x76cm; _ ZOOMable) poster for the play by Alfred de Musset at Théâtre de la Renaissance, starring Sarah Bernhardt.
Dance (1898, 60x38cm; _ ZOOMable)
Salammbô (1896, 39x22cm; _ ZOOMable)
La Dame aux Camélias (1896, 207x72cm; _ ZOOMable) poster for the play at Théâtre de la Renaissance, starring Sarah Bernhardt.
Pevecké Sdruzeni Ucitelu Moravskysk (1911, 109x80cm; _ ZOOMable)
Flower (1897, 66x44cm; _ ZOOMable)
–- The Enchantress (1205x900pix, 81kb _ .ZOOM to 2109x1575pix, 144kb)
–- S#*> Mother and Child (_ /S#*>ZOOM)
Nestlé's Food for Infants (1897, 72x35cm; _ ZOOMable)
La Samaritaine (1897, 173x58cm; _ ZOOMable) poster for the play of Rostand at Théâtre de la Renaissance, starring Sarah Bernhardt.
Chocolat Masson (Manhood) (1897, 30x22cm)
–- Job (1898, 139x93cm; 1338x892pix, 170kb _ .ZOOM to 2342x1661pix, 330kb) not biblical and nothing to do with employment: it is a sitting woman, in a full-length sleeveless dress, who is holding in her left hand a pack of Job cigarette papers and, in her right hand a lit cigarette with a long flame which emits a even longer trail of smoke across the picture behing her head. This is one of a number of posters which Mucha made for the Job company.
Biscuits Lefèvre-Utile (1896, 60x43cm; _ ZOOMable to 1640x1186pix, 568kb)/F#*>
–- Lefèvre-Utile (1903, 72x53cm; 820x592pix, 120kb _ ZOOM to 1639x1184pix, 409kb _ ZOOM+ to 2318x1675pix, 591kb _ ZOOM++ to slightly cropped 2556x1976pix, 1196kb)
68 images at ARC
—(090723)
click for HERALDIC CHIVALRY
^ >Born on 24 July 1871: Giacomo Balla, Italian Futurist painter who died on 05 March 1958.
— Balla was one of the founders of Futurism, signing the Futurist Manifesto which was published in 1910. In this document Balla, along with artists including Umberto Boccioni and Carlo Carrà, outlined their primary objective to depict movement, which they saw as symbolic of their commitment to the dynamic forward thrust of the twentieth century. Futurism celebrated the machine - the racing car was heralded as the triumph of the age - and early futurist paintings were concerned with capturing figures and objects in motion. In his Girl Running on the Balcony, Balla attempted to realize movement by showing the girl's running legs in repeated sequence. Other paintings, such as Dog on a Leash, got to grips with the problem of recreating speed and flight by superimposing several images on top of each other. Inevitably, the advances that were made by this short-lived movement were eventually to be overtaken by the art of cinematography. Futurism was finished by the First World War, after which Futurist ideals became increasingly associated with Fascism. Balla began to plough an independent path, at first toward abstraction and, after 1931, toward figuration.
—      Nato a Torino, Balla si trasferisce in gioventù a Roma dove morirà nel 1958. Aderisce al Futurismo nel 1910, quando sottoscrive il Manifesto dei pittori futuristi (11 Feb 1910) e il Manifesto tecnico della pittura futurista. (11 Apr 1910). Gli esordi di Balla sono caratterizzati da una pittura influenzata dal divisionismo di Pellizza da Volpedo e Giovanni Segantini e dal postimpressionismo francese, interesse approfondito dall'artista durante un soggiorno a Parigi nel 1900.
      È nel 1912 con opere come il celebre Dinamismo di un cane al guinzaglio, che l'arte di Balla si delinea con caratteristiche decisamente futuriste, già affermando la sua peculiare attenzione all'analisi oggettiva del particolare, sicuramente legata al forte interesse dell'artista per la fotografia.
      L'idea del moto e il senso moderno della velocità, centrali nella poetica del Futurismo, sono resi da Balla mediante un linguaggio di dettagli ripetuti e dissociazioni cromatiche. Successivamente, la sua pittura si fa più astratta, per costruirsi su una rete di "linee andamentali", traiettorie che tracciano il movimento di corpi nello spazio a partire da un punto di vista mobile. Con le Compenetrazioni iridescenti, dipinte tra la fine del 1912 e il 1914, l'artista realizza una serie di composizioni liricamente astratte, scandite da forme triangolari pure e armonie di colori che aspirano ad un'idea di totalità.
      Nel 1916 firma insieme a Depero il manifesto Ricostruzione futurista dell'universo che delinea un programma di ricreazione del reale attraverso gli equivalenti astratti di tutte le forme pensati come complessi plastici mobili. In questo ambito si collocano l'ideazione e la creazione di congegni meccanici, musicali e rumoristici e poi di giocattoli, vestiti, concerti, edifici, secondo una logica che ispira anche la creazione di mobili ed interi arredamenti.
      A partire dagli anni Venti Balla si indirizza nuovamente verso una pittura figurativa, che conserva sfondi con motivi astratti di impianto dinamico, per affrancarsi definitivamente dal Futurismo intorno alla metà degli anni Trenta, con una serie di opere caratterizzate da una intensa ricerca luminosa ai limiti del misticismo.
— Nel 1895 si stabilisce insieme alla madre a Roma. Nel 1899 partecipa per la prima volta all'Esposizione annuale della Società degli Amatori e Cultori, manifestazione artistica alla quale sarà presente, costantemente, fino al 1914 ed alle edizioni del 1928 e del 1929. Nel settembre del 1900 parte per Parigi, dove visita l'Esposizione Universale, nella quale ha modo di vedere, oltre ai quadri dei divisionisti italiani, le opere dei pittori dell'Impressionismo e neoimpressionismo francesi, quelle della Secessione austriaca, e gli studi fotografici sul movimento di Etienne-Jules Marey. Durante il soggiorno parigino rimane colpito dagli effetti della luce notturna e dell'illuminazione artificiale delle strade, come dimostrano i numerosi quadri, realizzati tra il 1900 e il 1902, in cui rappresenta la città di notte. Nel 1903 viene ammesso, per la prima volta, alla Biennale d'Arte Internazionale di Venezia con il Ritratto di Roesler-Franz. In questi anni indirizza il proprio interesse nei confronti delle tematiche del verismo sociale e realizza le quattro grandi tele del ciclo, mai portate a termine, Dei Viventi. Nel primo decennio del '900 affianca a tele dipinte con la tecnica divisionista della scomposizione del colore, una serie di quadri monocromi, raffiguranti scene notturne ed interni, tra cui Il dubbio.
      A partire dal 1906 si interessa, soprattutto, allo studio di problemi luministici. L'11 febbraio del 1910 sottoscrive Il Manifesto dei Pittori Futuristi e, nell'aprile dello stesso anno il Manifesto tecnico della Pittura Futurista; tuttavia, almeno fino al 1912, non vi è sentore, nelle sue opere, della partecipazione al movimento di Filippo Tommaso Marinetti. Nel 1911 fa parte del comitato organizzatore dell'Esposizione Internazionale di Roma alla quale partecipa anche in veste di espositore con Il Ritratto di Nathan. Espone alcune tele alla Mostra Futurista allestita nel Foyer del Teatro Costanzi di Roma, dove figuravano anche opere di Umberto Boccioni, Carlo Carrà, Luigi Russolo, Gino Severini e Ardengo Soffici. In queste tele Balla analizza il movimento di un corpo vivente, rappresentando la sequenza degli spostamenti della figura nello spazio. Nel 1914 invia ventisette opere alla LXXXIII Esposizione di Belle Arti della Società degli Amatori e Cultori, suscitando la perplessità della critica, che lo trova eclettico. Nel 1915 firma con Fortunato Depero il Manifesto della Ricostruzione Futurista dell'Universo. Realizza anche alcune scenografie. Dal 1921 al 1928 si dedica all'esecuzione di opere decorative e alla progettazione di oggetti di arte applicata, mobili, paraventi, piatti, ceramiche e stoffe. Nel 1929 firma il Manifesto Aeropittura. Dal 1931 prende le distanze dal Futurismo e la sua produzione successiva testimonia un ritorno alla pittura figurativa.

LINKS
–- Il Sole e Mercurio
–- Velocità
–- Dinamismo di un cane al guinzaglio (1912, 91x110cm)
–- Form~Spirit Transformation (1918, 3 divergent rays reflected convergent)
The Flight of the Swallows (1913)
–- Young Girl Running on a Balcony _ (1912, somewhat like a photo multiple-exposure [but with partial superimposition] in Animal Locomotion- An Electro-photographic Investigation of Consecutive Phases of Animal Movements. by Muybridge [Eadweard Muggeridge 09 Apr 1830 – 1904])
Feu d'Artifice (telai, acrilico su tela, plexiglas, lampade colorate, sonoro, 500x550x550cm) _ Gli elementi che compongono la scena di Feu d'artifice sono stati ricostruiti al Castello di Rivoli in occasione della mostra Sipario del 1997, dedicata allo stretto rapporto tra teatro e arti visive. Feu d'artifice, unico spettacolo realizzato, tra quelli progettati da Balla, andò in scena al Teatro Costanzi a Roma il 30 aprile 1917. Sulle note di Stravinsky per tre minuti Balla presentò il suo teatro del futuro, in linea con quanto proclamato nel 1915 da Filippo Tommaso Marinetti che promuoveva un teatro "Atecnico, Dinamico, Simultaneo", cioè brevissimo e capace in pochi minuti di condensare molteplici situazioni e idee (manifesto Il Teatro Futurista Sintetico, 11 gennaio 1915). Balla concepì Feu d'artifice come una serie di forme dall'architettura non-logica e dinamica destinate ad interagire con un gioco di luci in rapporto con gli accordi musicali. Al Museo della Scala di Milano sono conservati oltre venti fogli che recano i progetti per ciascun elemento dello scenario. Balla realizzò anche un autoritratto (perduto) nel cui sfondo erano riportate alcune delle forme di Feu d'artifice.
Ritratto del sindaco Onorato Caetani (75x62cm) _ Il dipinto, quasi sconosciuto agli studiosi di Balla, è stato segnalato soltanto in due occasioni: nella scheda comparsa negli Archivi del Divisionismo e nella monografia di Maurizio Fagiolo dell'Arco, che menziona il ritratto del duca Caetani, sindaco di Roma tra il 1890 e il 1892, senza riprodurlo e ne segnala anche l'abbozzo, dipinto su tela, nella collezione Balla. Il modo di segnare il fondo del dipinto, con tratti non omogenei, e l'impostazione della figura, che sembra esorbitare dai margini del quadro, avvicina l'opera ai ritratti della signora Ida Maini e di Bice Morselli, datati entrambi 1910, nella fase che precede di qualche anno il periodo futurista dell'artista.
Alberi spogli (1902)
Compénétration iridescente eucalyptus (1914; 579x700pix, 282kb)
–- S#> Compenetrazione Iridescente N.4 (studio della luce) (643x900pix, 83kb)
–- S#> Linee Forze di Paesaggio Estivo (702x900pix, 115kb)
–- S#> Linea Forza di Mare (644x870pix, 104kb)
–- Motivo Geometrico (round 1155pix diam., 57kb) _ Not one to waste the four corners of a picture, the pseudonymous Comono Baila has transformed this picture into the rectangular and otherwise not particulary geometrical, though symmetrical,
      _ Mon Petit Veau Jette à l'Eau Mes Tricots aka Mirth Trim (2006, screen filling, 340kb _ .ZOOM to 1864x2636pix, 2183kb), which is much richer in variety of colors and textures.
–- S#> Alberi e Siepe a Villa Borghese (893x900pix, 312kb)
—(080723)
^ Born on 24 July 1927: Alex Katz, US Pop Artist. — {“cats” is not the same as “many cats”, and Katz is not the same as Mané-Katz [05 Jun 1894 – 09 Sep 1962]. O hel!} — {Do NOT drop the x and call him “Alé Katz”}
— Katz belongs to the same generation as Andy Warhol, Jasper Johns, Robert Rauschenberg, Frank Stella, Claes Oldenburg, and Roy Lichtenstein, but his work always seemed marginal compared with theirs.
      He is known for his billboard-size figure paintings and portrait heads. Typically he paints his motif from close to, so that the face or body fills our field of vision. Though the pictures have little depth and the space in them is limited, the colors are bright and the compositions punchy. With their big, bold forms and broad areas of monochrome color bathed in even light, you can recognise a picture by Katz from streets away. Up close you are enveloped by the Ozymandias-scaled heads and by bodies the size of small buildings.
      If we are looking for Katz's predecessors, we should start with the US muralists of the 1930s, or the Art Deco proponents whose canvases adorned the public saloons of great ocean liners between the wars. The pictures don't invite or reward close inspection. The paint surface is no more interesting close to than it is from 3 meters away, and there is something formulaic about Katz's approach to the human face.
      In a characteristic Katz portrait, the almond-shaped eyes and perfectly formed lips are so schematically drawn that they look like those in a how-to-draw manual. Except that there are no Ben Day shading dots or speech bubbles, his figures are first cousins to Roy Lichtenstein's cartoon characters. All the people in these pictures come from the same educated and affluent upper middle classes, their gleaming white teeth and even features testaments to the skills of the orthodontist and, possibly, the plastic surgeon. In their expensive clothes and designer sunglasses they stroll through spring meadows, picnic by the sea, or loll on the beach, smiling.
      All have the depthless uniformity of expression you find in the faces of the people you see in television commercials. In Katz's paintings there is no pain, little tension, no emotion and zero sexuality. As snapshots from suburbia, his art is relentlessly vacuous. What is missing in Katz's art is a sense of moral or emotional complexity, a sense that life isn't quite this simple.
      Presumably the studied neutrality of these scenes is deliberate. Katz was painting a nation on Prozac decades before that wonder drug had been invented. The question is, was he also painting for an audience on Prozac? Is there more to these pictures than first meets the eye? Is their emotional numbness, for example, a comment on the banality of US middle-class life?
      The answer is no. Katz is one of the few US artists of his generation not to have been touched by the influence of Marcel Duchamp. There is nothing tongue-in-cheek about his art. Bearing in mind that some of his earlier pictures were painted when the Vietnam War was tearing US society apart, it is all the more remarkable that they have no subtext.
      From the perspective of the late 1990s, the most avant-garde thing about Katz is his own admission that his pictures are "not concerned with psychology, just surfaces". In dumbing his art down, Katz was the precursor of the decorative, meaningless art which is emerged later. Katz was a "post-human" artist long before the rest of the art world decided that brain-dead was cool.
      Certain gestures or poses in Katz's paintings derive from Michelangelo, Rodin and Munch. But Katz divests those gestures of psychological significance, rendering them all but meaningless. And so, when a fashionably dressed woman in one canvas lightly rests her hand on her chin, Katz may well have had Rodin's Thinker in mind, but he drains the pose of frustration and intensity, cleaning it up for country-club consumption.
      Though Katz's figurative work is rather blah, the landscapes are a different story. In these we don't worry about the absence of meaning or character. Once again Katz has an unerring eye for the cliché — the moose by the lake, the moonlight on the water, the flowers in spring. But rippling water or trembling leaves are seen as semi-abstract forms, allowing us to concentrate on the pictures' purely painterly qualities.
      Paradoxically, it is when painting inanimate things that Katz finds a gestural freedom and pleasure in the handling of paint which is largely absent from the supercool figure paintings. Emotion at last enters the work. In the winter nocturne City Landscape circular areas of softly brushed-in white pigment conjure up headlamps or street lights, while great arcs of black, blue and silver become bare, snow-touched branches. The whole picture is steeped in the mystery and elegance of Central Park at night. And in one of his best painting, May of 1996, a medley of lime and forest-green brush strokes loosely painted against a white ground create a fugue of color as joyful as Jackson Pollock's Autumn Rhythm.
      What is astonishing is that all of Katz's landscapes date from the 1990s. What we are seeing is an artist who did not find his true subject, the landscape, until late in his career. For many people the early work of Johns, Oldenburg and Rauschenberg is more interesting than what came later. Katz, when he reached the age of 70, was a rarity among US artists of his generation in reversing that pattern and saving the best for last.

LINKS
Self-Portrait with Sunglasses
–- Swimmer (1990; 744x344pix, 24kb _ ZOOM to 1024x486pix, 53kb) Katz's picture is mostly a blank background, the woman swimmer (not swimming, but just standing) is only a small part of it. The two preceding links are to images that mercifully have cropped out the excess background. But if background is what you want, and you enjoy scrolling around to find the picture, here is:
      _ Swimmer (lost in hugely exaggerated background) (20'722x29'306pix, 24kb _ ZOOM to bigger swimmer, but not much huger background 21'022x29'730pix, 53kb). Furthermore, if you insist on having a picture in proportion to such huge backgrounds, the pseudonymous Axel Dogz has provided this
      _ HUMONGOSUPERCALLIFRAGISTICOMEGAZOOM (8640x11'520pix, 244kb) where you can examine individually the 995'328 pixels of the original image, each one now enlarged to 10x10 pixels. If that is a bit too much for you, you might prefer to look at a small sample of that huge image, the detail
      _ Face of the Swimmer (730x1008pix, 59kb). Enlarging further, and now making his own picture, Dogz has produced
      _ Mosaic Impression of the Right Eye of the Swimmer (2006; screen filling, 66kb _ ZOOM to 1864x2636pix, 395kb) and went from there to an extreme enlargement of a speck in the eye, which Dogz transformed unrecognizably into the extraordinary symmetrical abstraction
      _ Eyed Eye aka I Die (2006; screen filling, 173kb _ ZOOM to 1864x2636pix, 2987kb)
–- Ursula (1990; 643x995pix, 55kb)
Red Coat (800x395pix, 36kb)
–- Swamp Maple (689x468pix, 40kb _ ZOOM to 1378x936pix, 135kb) greenish
Swamp Maple 4:30 (800x502pix, 76kb) same picture but yellowish
–- S#> Good Afternoon (598x800pix, 40kb)
John Updike (Time 18 Oct 1982 cover)
–- S#> Red Branch (x800pix, 45kb) the branch is gray, the background is a light brick-red.
97 images at Ciudad de la Pintura
—(060720)

Died on a 24 July:


^ 1971 Josef Sima, Czech painter born on 19 March 1891. — LINKS
A Pool (1935; 321x400pix, 15kb)
— (Another pool?) (650x480pix, 36kb)
Hot Air Balloon (1926; 460x364pix, 23kb)

1910 - Arkhip Kuindzhi, Russian painter (b. 1841)

^ 1908 Walter Leistikow, German painter, decorative artist, etcher, exhibition organizer, and writer, born on 25 October 1865. He studied painting briefly in 1883, at the Akademie in Berlin, but he was dismissed after six months as ‘untalented’. From 1883 to 1885 he was trained by the painter Hermann Eschke (1823–1900) and from 1885 to 1887 by the Norwegian painter Hans Fredrik Gude. Gude had a decisive influence on the style of Leistikow’s early works, as is especially clear in Leistikow’s light coastal landscapes with figures. His most significant work from this period, however, is Brickworks near Eckernförde (1887). Leistikow’s dismissal from the Akademie concentrated his attention on issues of artistic policy. When the German government decided not to send works for exhibition in the Exposition Universelle in Paris in 1889, Leistikow himself organized the dispatch of works to Paris. In 1892, under a pseudonym, he wrote articles on the outraged German reaction to the work of Edvard Munch, sharply attacking the Akademie and its director, Anton von Werner. In the same year, he was one of the founders of the Gruppe der Elf, out of which the Berlin Secession developed in 1898. Leistikow also published a novel, Auf der Schwelle (1896), and remained in close contact with the Berlin literary world.
Seenlandschaft mit Windmühle und Park (50x60cm; 442x510pix, 57kb)

^ 1896 Kaspar Karsen (or Karssen), Dutch painter born on 02 April 1810. — [Do NOT give his initials as KKK] [Ne PAS l'appeler par ses seules initiales “KK”] — He was a student at the academy in Amsterdam from 1825 to 1827, and thereafter a student of his uncle Pieter George Westenberg [1791–1873] and of the latter’s student H. G. ten Cate [1803–1856]. From 1830 to 1834 he was a decorative artist under D. Vettewinkel [1787–1841]. In 1836 he painted the Courtyard of the Old Exchange in Amsterdam. He made his first study trip along the Rhine and Danube in 1837, recording views of the German towns. These reappeared continually in such later paintings as Imaginary View on the Rhine. He also made trips to Prague. He lived and worked in Haarlem between 1824 and 1844 and later in Amsterdam. In his lifetime Karsen was less well known than Jan Hendrik Weissenbruch and Cornelis Springer, but his work subsequently became very popular.
–- S#> Town on the Waterfront (1884, 22x32cm; _ /S#*>ZOOM to 1052x1560pix, 228kb)

1861 Georgius Jacobus Johannes van Os, Dutch painter born (main coverage) on 20 November 1782. —(071119)

1842 John Sell Cotman, English painter born (full coverage) on 16 May 1782.

^ 1804 Martin Knoller, Austrian painter born on 08 November 1725. He was first taught by his father, Franz Knoller [–1773], and the Innsbruck painter Ignaz Pögl, then he studied at the Vienna Akademie (1751–1753) under Paul Troger and Michael Angelo Unterberger. Their influence shows in his first commission (1754), a fresco of The Glory of Saint Stephen for Anras parish church in eastern Tyrol. In 1755 Knoller went to Rome and Naples to further his training. There he came into contact with Graf Karl Joseph von Firmian who, as Imperial Governor of Lombardy, entrusted Knoller with decorating the Palazzo Firmian-Vigoni (since destroyed) in Milan. Between 1760 and 1765 Knoller was again in Rome, where the works of Pompeo Batoni, Anton Raphael Mengs and Anton von Maron had a decisive impact on him. These classicizing influences show in his Martyrdom of Saint Catherine (1763) and Martyrdom of Saint Sebastian (1765) and the altarpiece Saint Charles Borromeo among Plague Victims (1769). — Knoller's students included Andrea Appiani, Josef Bergler, Josef Schöpf, Franz Seraph Zwinck. — LINKS
Nikolaus II. Prince Esterházy (1793, 252x175cm; 460x302pix, 27kb _ ZOOM to 1255x822pix, 146kb _ ZOOM+ to 2510x1644pix, 586kb)

1802 Joseph Ducreux, French painter born (full coverage) on 26 June 1735.

^ 1781 Étienne Aubry, Versailles French painter born on 10 January 1745. He was trained under Jacques-Augustin Silvestre (1719–1809) and Joseph Marie Vien, exhibiting portraits at the Salon from 1771 and becoming a member of the Académie Royale as a portrait painter in 1775. His portraits of such eminent contemporaries as the composer Christoph Willibald Gluck are characterized by a quiet, understated elegance. In 1775, ambitious to improve his status as an artist within the hierarchy of genres, he began to exhibit scenes of domestic life. Paternal Love is indebted to the paintings of Jean-Baptiste Greuze, but the sentimental subject is depicted with a compositional clarity and restrained naturalism that make Aubry the most original and appealing of Greuze’s imitators. The Nurse’s Farewell departs from prototypes by Greuze in its representation of a fashionable urban family in a landscape setting. In the late 1770s Aubry also painted melodramatic scenes, which demonstrate his desire to rival the success of Greuze’s Paternal Curse. Aubry’s genre paintings were praised by contemporary critics, including Denis Diderot, and were bought by such notable collectors as the Comte d’Angiviller, Directeur des Bâtiments du Roi. In 1777, under the auspices of d’Angiviller, he went to Rome in order to study to become a history painter, but his progress disappointed the hopes of his patrons. Aubry’s later paintings, such as Coriolanus’ Farewell to his Wife (posthumously exhibited at the 1781 Salon) inspired many critics to express regret for his early death.
–- S#> A Sleeping Boy (1773, oval 48x39cm; 202kb)

^ 1701 (or any day in 1688?) Jacob Gillig (or Gellig), Utrecht Dutch artist born in 1636.
A Still life of fish (90x129cm; 313x450pix, 25kb) _ Spacious still life with a corf and dead fish. A view into the darkened country with water in the background is completed with a setting of dead fish falling from a full corf standing on a wooden board down on a net that is lying on the floor. Fish in the corf or on the board are partially portioned. They are odd kinds of codfish. Fish on the net represent freshwater kinds (pike, carp, perch, rudd and ruff). Brilliantly painted still life belongs into the topical group that was very popular in the Netherlands in the 17th century. The reason was that the fishery played an important role in the country's economy and a great part of coastal population was somehow concerned with the fishery. Moreover, the fishery represented a source, thus a synonym for wealth. Like cheese and milk, also fish became an often topic of the Dutch paintings addressed to a wealthy town clientele. The authors like Alexander Adrianssen, Clara Peters, Frans Snyders, Adriaen van Utrecht and others, used also this topic. The area of the painting with rather sober colors is graduating from dark shades on sides, towards the center that is dominated by a pink filet of probably salmon meat falling over the edge of the board.

1680 Ferdinand van Bol, Dutch painter baptized as an infant (full coverage) on 24 June 1616.

^ 1603 (02 July?) Santi di Tito, Florentine painter, draftsman, and architect, born on 06 October 1536. — {He did NOT use the pseudonym Josip Broz}— Nothing is known of Santi di Tito's early years but he probably went to Florence about 1550 to receive his artistic training firstly from Bastiano da Montecarlo, then from Agnolo Bronzino, and finally from Baccio Bandinelli. In 1554 Santi di Tito was admitted to the Compagnia di San Luca in Florence. It was surely the years in Bronzino's studio, alongside artists such as Alessandro Allori, that defined Santi di Tito's portrait style. The numerous Medici portraits produced by Bronzino and his workshop, in which clarity and elegance prevail, would have set Santi a good example for succeeding in this genre.He studied in the workshop of Agnolo Bronzino. Santi di Tito's art is of fundamental importance to the history of Florentine painting in the transitional period between Mannerism and Baroque. He rejected the virtuosity of Mannerist painters and returned to an earlier Renaissance tradition that emphasized clear narrative and the expression of a purer, more genuine religious sentiment. His most important works are altarpieces and frescoes; his private commissions included devotional paintings, mythological scenes and portraits. Although he was less important as an architect, here too he upheld an ideal of purity and simplicity that parallels the style of his paintings. — Tito's students included Agostino Ciampelli, Lodovico Cigoli, Francesco Mochi, Gregorio Pagani, Niccolò Pomarancio, Antonio Tempesta. — LINKS
–- S#> A Lady (89x65cm; 510x370pix, 65kb) She is half length, wearing a white and gold embroidered dress, standing together with her dog. She appears distinguished: her jewelry and embroidered costume both hint at her wealth, and her left hand is delicately posed, pointing gently at the dog which must surely be seen as a sign of fidelity (perhaps to her intended betrothed?).


Born on a 24 July:


1968 Colleen Doran, US comic book artist and writer. —(080723)

1938 Eugene James Martin [–01 Jan 2005], US painter.
–- untitled (1965, 127x127cm; 700x700pix, 42kb) —(080723)

1900 Zelda Fitzgerald [–10 Mar 1948], US artist, wife of writer F. Scott Fitzgerald [24 Sep 1896 – 21 Dec 1940].
Marriage at Cana (1509x2028pix, 2453kb)
A Mad Tea Party (360x548x81kb) —(080723)

^ 1892 Marcel Gromaire, French painter and designer who died on 11 April 1971. — {Est-il vrai que dans sa famille, de génération en génération, on évite de donner à un fils le même prénom que son père, car on ne veut pas de Gromaire II?}— He was set to follow a legal career and received little formal artistic training. From 1910, however, he frequented the studios of Montparnasse, assimilating Matisse's style through tuition from Henri Le Fauconnier at the Académie de la Palette and from Félix Vallotton at the Académie Ranson. He exhibited six canvases at the Salon des Indépendants of 1911. He continued to draw while serving in the Army from 1913 to 1919 but was wounded on the Somme in 1916. From 1919 he devoted himself to painting and to writing about art and the cinema. His post-war paintings were marked by an admiration for the Flemish and to a lesser extent German Expressionists and for the work of Fernand Léger, although Gromaire later repudiated the Expressionist label. From 1920 he exhibited regularly at the Salon d'Automne and at the Salon des Indépendants and in 1921 held his first one-man show at the Galerie La Licorne in Paris; the gallery's owner, Maurice Girardin, to whom he was contracted between 1920 and 1932, later donated his collection of Gromaire's work to the Musée d’Art Moderne de la Ville de Paris. Wider recognition of his art resulted in 1925 from the publication of the first monograph on him and from the controversy aroused by War (1925) on its exhibition at the Salon des Indépendants. — Henri Catargi was an assistant of Gromaire. — Gromaire's students included Höreur Ágústsson, Juan Carlos Castagnino, Thorvaldur Skúlason, Cemal Tollu. — LINKS
La place Blanche (1928) _ Cette oeuvre influencée par le cubisme, caractéristique du style de l'artiste, est une allégorie monumentale de la vie nocturne parisienne.
La Guerre (1925)
La Toilette (1924)
Etude de nu au manteau (1929)
–- Seated Nude with Vase of Flowers (1944, 30x22cm, half~size, 67kb _ ZOOM to full size, 230kb)
–- Normandes portant coiffes de Pont-Aven (1954 colored sketch, 30x40cm; half~size, 100kb _ .ZOOM to full size, 338kb) —(060718)

^ 1868 Max Alfred Buri, Swiss painter who died on 21 May 1915. — {Where did they bury Buri's work that I can't find much of it on the Internet?} {Did they bury Buri when he died of beri beri?}— While still at school he was given drawing lessons by Paul Volmar [1832–1906] in Berne. From 1883 he was a student of Fritz Schider [1846–1907] in Basle, where he became acquainted with the works of Hans Holbein the younger and Arnold Böcklin. In 1886 he went to the Akademie der Bildenden Künste in Munich, transferring in 1887 to Simon Hollósy’s painting school. After seeing the works of the French Impressionists exhibited in Munich, he moved to the Académie Julian in Paris in 1889. He made several visits to Algeria, Holland, Belgium and England, and in 1893 he returned to Munich to study under Albert von Keller. In 1898 he settled in Switzerland, living first at Lucerne, then from 1903 in Brienz, near Interlaken. About 1900, influenced by the paintings of Ferdinand Hodler, Buri moved on from his early genre pictures, which were in mawkish shades of pink in the style of Keller and Hóllosy, to achieve an individual style that brought him great popularity. He established his reputation with Village Politicians (1904). He painted mainly the landscape and people of the Bernese Oberland, often depicting single figures and groups in front of bare indoor walls in realistic everyday scenes. The expressiveness of the compositions is achieved by clear contours and powerful clearly differentiated surfaces in local colors. Buri’s works are essentially populist rather than intellectual and avoid Hodler’s strict parallelism and Symbolist content.
–- S#> Alter Mann mit Handorgel (1911, 110x120cm; 463x508pix, 55kb)
Kunstsalon Wolfsberg (1913; 425x316pix, 51kb)

1860 Alfons Mucha [–14 Jul 1939], Czech painter and decorative artist. —(080723)

^ 1843 Eugen von Blaas (or de Blaas), Austrian Academic painter who died in 1931. He was from a family of painters. He was taught by his father, Karl von Blaas [28 Apr 1815 – 19 Mar 1894], one of the leading history, fresco, and portrait painters of the 19th century, who was also a respected professor at the Vienna and Venice academies. He later settled in Venice, where he became Professor at the Academy. There, de Blaas specialized in depicting a wide range of Venetian subjects, from its carnival, to balcony scenes, to portraits of individuals. Eugen studied at the academies in Rome and Venice (was then part of the Austrian Empire). Von Blaas exhibited in London between 1875 and 1892. His brother Julius was also a painter, specializing in animal paintings and military scenes. — LINKS
The Friendly Gossips (1901, 98x122cm; _ ZOOMable)
The Seamstress (85x69cm; _ ZOOMable)
Die Wasserträgerin (1908, 75x44cm; _ ZOOMable) _ Blaas was famed for depicting beautiful Italian women at work or in the company of admiring suitors. Here, he deftly captures the exchange of glances between a beautiful and flirtatious girl and the viewer, her unseen admirer. The precise technique and bright palette of his Venetian genre scenes were in tune with the Venetian tradition of painting.
–- S#> Die Lauscherin (1906, 80x47cm; 350x189pix, 24 kb _ ZOOM to 1000x534pix, 234kb, from there ZOOMable to 2429x1297pix, 476kb)
Zwei Kinder (1889, 155x110cm; _ ZOOMable) _ The boy served von Blaas as a model also in The First Cigar (1885), Italian boy with hat (1887), and The First Cigarette (1896).
The Grape Picker (1902, 79x44cm; _ ZOOMable)
Mother's Little Helper (1884)
–- S#> Girl with Two Produce Baskets (1900, 80x44cm; 799x440pix, 49kb) or the same in a smaller but brighter image (600x319pix, 85kb)
Musette (1900, 125x74cm; 900x531pix, 139kb) _ This beautifully dressed woman. Her elaborate costume suggests a woman of wealth. Though de Blaas more commonly focused on flower sellers and women of the working class, this portrait shows a refined subject, but certainly not a remote figure incapable of love. Rather, the underlying theme of the painting is that of flirtation. He deftly captures the very moment when glances are exchanged between an attractive young girl and the unseen suitor, in this case none other than the male viewer himself.
— Ninetta (1887, 263x140cm) _ Ninetta is typical of von Blaas's paintings of beautiful girls in Venetian settings exchanging flirtatious glances with the viewer. Blaas made his name for himself with idealised portrayals of humble working girls - fruit sellers, water carriers, seamstresses or, as in this case, laundresses - elevating them from the reality of their surroundings into a realm of grace and beauty. As the critic for Premiato Stabilimento tipo-litografico dell'Emporio mockingly pointed out in his review of the 1887 Esposizione Nazionale: “What disbelief when it was announced that Mr de Blaas's entry depicted a laundress! A laundress? Are you pulling our leg, Mr de Blaas? A laundress, this beautiful donnina, so fresh and clean? And in such a charming pose? Is she not a lady, disguised as a laundress? She is definitely not a genuine washerwoman!” The painting's actual title, Ninetta, is suitably ambiguous. A name of endearment as fitting for a lowly laundress as for a girl of good family, Blaas leaves it up to his viewers to make up their own minds. Whatever the girl's identity, whoever she is, the reviewer is highly complimentary of the painting, and concludes, “looking at Ninetta I was filled with the same feeling of satisfaction, pleasure and fulfilment as when walking along the street and encountering a bella donnina.”
–- S#> Mädchen mit Granatapfeln (1912, 86x66cm; 440x329pix, 25kb _ ZOOM to 600x449pix, 113kb) _ In Western art, the pomegranate is a symbol of regeneration (after its classical association with Proserpine who returned every year to regenerate the earth), and also of chastity and virginity. Here, von Blaas deftly captures the exchange of glances between the fecund young woman and the viewer, her unseen suitor. Blaas is lending a sense of monumentality to this subject, reinforcing the beauty of this girl by having her dominate the composition.
–- S#> Lisa (1889, 242x103cm; 799x423pix, 47kb) _ Lisa possesses a particularly confident air in her strident pose as she carries baskets of ripe peaches and juicy grapes. As such, the overall affect of her physical presence is magnified. The perspective suggests that the painting was intended to be hung above eye level, allowing the figure seemingly to step forward from her stone stairs and out of the pictorial space while she ensnares the viewer with her sideward glance.
–- S#> A Boy (1884, 42x35cm; 900x733pix, 127kb) with curly dark brown hair and a red cap; head and shoulders, head turned one-quarter to the viewer's left.
–- S#> A Woman (1900, 45x30cm; 510x334pix, 44kb _ ZOOM to 700x458pix, 159kb)
Am Brunnen (1872, 53x90cm; 386x875pix, 184kb) _ This painting epitomises von Blaas' vision of the everyday life of the ordinary citizens of Venice, whether seamstresses, flower vendors, washerwomen, or fisherfolk. Works such as this, set against a glowing rustic Venetian backdrop, provide the viewer with a unique perspective of the city's colourful customs and costumes. Von Blaas was not a social realist, however, always resisting the depiction of squalor or hardship. Rather, his paintings are a celebration of pride and gaiety in the face of adversity, as Clarence Cook observed as early as 1882: 'Sympathy with poverty is not what Blaas has to offer us, but rather a good-natured fellow feeling for the foibles of the crowd.' Born in Italy to Austrian parents, von Blaas became enamored with Venice from the moment he enrolled at the Accademia there. He later settled permanently in la Serenissima and became a teacher at the Academy, a position which had been held by his illustrious father Karl von Blaas. Von Blaas was not alone in his fascination with Venice, as the city held universal appeal among northern Europeans during the nineteenth century. Venice and Rome were still among the prime destinations for wealthy young travellers on their Grand Tour, and von Blaas' pictures would have found ready buyers among such tourists. He had the added advantage of a known name in Italy, his father having been one of the most important society portraitists in Rome.
54 images at ARC

1757 (Julian date) Vladimir “Borovikovsky”, covered at 04 Aug (Gregorian). —(080723).

1734 Jean Baptiste Claude Robin, French artist who died on 23 November 1818.

1703 Justus Juncker, German artist who died in 1767. — {Did he make just junck? Is that why I find no example of his work on the Internet? Or are these questions doing injustice to Justus?}— Juncker was a German by birth, but studied under several Dutch masters. He copied the works of de Wyck, de Heem and van Huysum, among others, and his style reflects the detailed realism of these artists.

1695 Martin Mytens (or Meytens) II, Swedish artist who died on 23 March 1770. — {Did Mytens wear myttens during the Swedish winter?} — Relative? of Dutch painters Jan Mytens [1614-1670], Daniel Mytens the Elder [1590-1647]?

^ 1623 Matheus van Helmont, Flemish artist who died in 1679.
The Alchemist (375x500pix, 45kb)

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