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DEATH: 1620 SARACENI
BIRTHS: 1735 LÉPICIÉ — 1863 MICHELENA — 1881 GONCHAROVA1867 SEYSSAUD 
^ Born on 16 June 1735: Michel~Nicolas~Bernard Lépicié, French painter, draftsman, and professor, who died on 14 September 1784. He painted portraits, domestic genre scenes, and historical subjects. His best works, although not entirely free from the sentimentality of the period, have something of the tranquil beauty associated with Chardin. His father, François-Bernard Lépicié [06 Oct 1698 – 17 Jan 1755] was an engraver and writer on art. His mother, Renée-Elisabeth Marlie Lépicié [1714–1773], was also an engraver.
— Nicolas-Bernard Lépicié was taught engraving by his father before entering the studio of the painter Carle Vanloo. In 1759 he won second prize in the Prix de Rome competition at the Académie Royale de Peinture et de Sculpture, but he never went to Rome. He was approved (agréé) by the Académie Royale in 1764 on presentation of a vast painting of The Landing of William the Conqueror on the English Coast. He subsequently painted a series of pictures, including The Baptism of Christ (1765) and Christ and the Little Children (1767), as well as a Conversion of Saul (1767).
      In 1769 he was received (reçu) as a full member by the Académie Royale on presentation of Achilles and the Centaur Chiron. He became an assistant professor in 1770 and a professor in 1777. His studio had a fine reputation, and several painters prominent in the Neo-classical generation were trained there, including Carle Vernet, Jean-Baptiste Regnault, Jean-Joseph Taillasson, Henri-Pierre Danloux, Jean-Frédéric Schall, Nicolas-Antoine Taunay. Lépicié's early success was doubtless facilitated by his father’s reputation and by the friendship of Charles-Nicolas Cochin II, who had succeeded Bernard Lépicié as Secrétaire Perpétuel of the Académie Royale in 1755 and owned at least five of Nicolas-Bernard’s works.

LINKS
Le Petit Dessinateur: the painter Carle Vernet at age 14 (1772, 41x33cm)
A Mother Feeding her Child (1774)
Narcissus (1771; 329x424pix, 41kb)
Cour de ferme (1784, 64x77cm; 469x574pix excluding frame, 63kb including frame) _ Traversant une grave crise morale vers la fin de sa vie, l'artiste se retira fréquemment à la campagne et peignit des scènes rustiques, alors comparées à celles du flamand Teniers. Ce tableau s'accorde avec l'esprit d'un temps nouvellement épris de la vie simple des champs, loin de la ville corrompue.
Achilles is Instructed in Music by the Centaur Chiron (1769; 142x195cm; gif 351x504pix, 64kb) _ Academy admission piece. In Greek mythology, the centaur Chiron, who was skilled in the arts of music, war, hunting, ethics and medicine, had advised King Peleus, a mortal though a descendant of Zeus, how to make the sea nymph Thetis marry him. The child born from this union, Ligyron, had a problem with his heels which started when his mother gave him a bath, out in the sticks, without washing his heels, in fact without even getting them wet. Ligyron was not put in leg-irons, but he was handed over as an infant to be educated by Chiron, who renamed him Achilles. Achilles grew up to have severe psychological problems. He spent nine years as a transvestite, until he was recruited for an overseas military adventure which dragged on, unsuccessfully but bloodily, for another nine years until something snapped in Achilles's mind. At one time he refused to fight, and on another occasion he spent ten days dragging around behind his chariot the corpse of a dead enemy. For this desecration the gods withdrew their protection and he died in action.
_ Compare:
L'éducation d'Achille par le centaure Chiron by Lépicié's student Jean-Baptiste Regnault [1754 – 1829],
Der Erziehung des Akilles (411x536pix, 253kb) by Christian Gottlieb Schick [15 Aug 1776 – 07 May 1812],
Achilles and the Centaur Chiron (425x338pix, 45kb) by Pompeo Batoni [25 Jan 1708 – 04 Feb 1787],
L'éducation d'Achille par Chiron (1690; 1100x767pix, 110kb) by Pierre Puget [16 Oct 1620 – 02 Dec 1694],
The Infant Achilles Handed over to Chiron (125x163cm; 800x1076pix, 131kb) by Donato Creti [1671-1749]
— {Quoi? Pas de portrait par Lepicié de l'épicier du coin?}
 
^ Born on 16 June 1863: Arturo Michelena, Venezuelan artist who died on 29 July 1898. Con once años ya dibuja su autorretrato y en 1983 participa en la Gran Exposición Nacional de Venezuela, donde expone Alegoría a la República y Entrega de la bandera victoriosa de Numancia, esta última ganadora del Primer Premio. Con 22 años se embarca con destino a París, donde se inscribe en la Académie Julien como alumno del maestro Jean Paul Laurens y obtiene la mención honorífica en el Salón de Artistas Franceses. En 1888 pinta su célebre Retrato Ecuestre de Bolívar, el Autorretrato con gorguera y La caridad. En octubre de 1891 realiza una de sus más grandes y ambiciosas composiciones, Pentesilea la cual expone este año en el Salón de París. A partir de 1893 su salud se ve afectada por una tuberculosis que le llevaría a la muerte cinco años después.
Charlotte Corday conducida al cadalso (1889, 235x214cm; 400x550pix, 67kb)
Miranda en la Carraca (1896, 197x246cm; 438x640pix, 87kb) _ Francisco de Miranda [28 Mar 1750 – 14 Jul 1816] was a South American revolutionary whose own plan for the independence of the Spanish American colonies failed but who is regarded as a forerunner of Simón Bolívar [24 Jul 1783 – 17 Dec 1830] and other more effective American fighters for independence. This painting, which portrays Miranda in the Spanish jail in Cadiz where he died, has become a graphic symbol of Venezuelan history and has immortalized the image of Miranda for generations of Venezuelans.
–- L'Enfant Malade (1887, 190x201cm; 948x995pix, 89kb) _ Michelena went to Paris in 1885, spending most of his time between the Académie Julien, where he studied under Jean Paul Laurens, and the atelier on rue Delambre which he shared with fellow artist Cristóbal Rojas. Michelena urgently needed recognition in order to start selling his paintings and gain independence from the ever changing moods of Venezuelan presidents, in particular Antonio Guzmán Blanco, who would ultimately cancel his scholarship at the time the artist was making his first drawings and oil preparatory sketches for L’Enfant Malade in the winter of 1886. Michelena presented L’Enfant Malade to the 1887 Paris Salon. It won the Gold Medal, Second Class, the highest honor a foreign artist could receive at the Salon. This prize implied that he would automatically be invited hors-concours for future Salons. The jury, presided over by William Bouguereau, did not award a first prize that year, making L’Enfant Malade the highest medal of the 1887 Salon. The painting was auctioned for $1'352'000 at Sotheby's on 16 November 2004.
   _ El Niño Enfermo (1886, 80x85cm; 400x424pix, 35kb) the final preparatory version for L’Enfant Malade.
–- S*#> La Visite Electorale (1886, 131x171cm; 601x799pix, 92kb) _ Just one year after having arrived in Paris on a scholarship, Michelena, at twenty-three, had earned a position with Le Monde Ilustré as an illustrator. He received an Honorable Mention for his participation in the Salon Officiel des Artistes of 1886. This award not only allowed him to stay in France, but also encouraged him to enter the Salon of 1887. He would have to paint two monumental works to get the attention of the jury. A newcomer in Paris, Arturo Michelena submitted two paintings to the prestigious 1887 Salon des Artistes Français, presided over by William Bouguereau that year. Une Visite Electorale, from 1886, was the first important painting Michelena made in Europe. L'Enfant Malade, of similar size and comparable composition, was awarded the second-class Gold Medal, the highest honor that could be bestowed on a foreign artist. Une Visite Electorale was the first to be painted. It is a genre scene depicting a country politician's visit to a peasant household. In a triangular composition, the confused farmer has sat down on the edge of the bed to cede his only chair to his well-dressed visitor, suggesting that he is merely waiting for the politician to finish his speech before accompanying him to the door. The little girl in the background is absorbed by her thoughts and is transfixed in the stream of sunlight from the window. She is perhaps the only character in the room who speaks clearly with her silence; it voices a total lack of interest in the politician's rhetoric, an attitude only hinted at by her parents who are constrained by politeness to listen. It is interesting to note that Michelena would seek to confront his French audience with such a realistic style. The two paintings are set in meager dwellings of poor country and city folk. There is, however, a clear intention to highlight the dignity with which these characters live. The artist painted with special attention the most insignificant objects on the wall, like the display of blue and white china on the shelves and the few pieces of furniture, allowing Michelena to demonstrate his virtuosity through the transparency of the glass and the brilliant, reflective qualities of the light. Clearly content with his submission of two great works, Michelena wrote to his mother on 15 April 1887: "Since the 15th of last month I have finished my paintings for the Salon...and you should know that I am more than satisfied, not by my ambition, but by having reached what I've always desired in my art”. After the Salon, however, Michelena's stipend from the Venezuelan government stopped and, in order for him to remain in Europe, both paintings were immediately sold. Une Visite Electorale was auctioned at Sotheby's on 24 May 2005 for $576'000.
–- Niño Jugando con Pájaro (1889, 33x41cm; 656x799pix, 88kb)
Las Queseras del Medio (1882, 67x96cm, 300x439pix, 25kb) 02 April 1819 battle during the Venezuelan War of Independence.
—(080615)
^ Died on 16 June 1620: Carlo Saraceni (or Sarucini) Veneziano, Venetian Baroque era painter born in 1580. He studied under Adam Elsheimer.
— He is best known for his jewel-like paintings representing sacred and secular themes, which combine a delicate technique inspired by Adam Elsheimer with a note of observed realism owed to Caravaggio. He also painted altarpieces and worked in fresco.
      Saraceni spent almost all his career in Rome, where he formed his style under the influence of Caravaggio and Elsheimer, painting small luminous pictures of figures in landscapes as well as much larger altarpieces, including the replacement of Caravaggio's Death of the Virgin, which the church of Santa Maria della Scala had rejected in 1606. He painted several other smaller variants or versions of the picture, so the design was evidently popular. His style was sensitive and poetic, showing a delicate feeling for color and tone. His liking for turbans, tasselled fringes, and stringy drapery folds, and his richly impasted paint may have influenced Dutch artists in Rome such as Lastman and Pynas, and through them Rembrandt. — [Who would be the Lastman to throw the first Stone?]
— “Pensionante del Saraceni” and Pietro della Vecchia [1602-1678] were students of Saraceni.

LINKS
The Birth of Christ (1610; 1060x745pix, 94kb) _ Saraceni is a difficult artist to define. He was essentially eclectic, with an unusual skill in brushwork almost akin to that of a northerner. He assimilated many influences, ranging from Caravaggio to the German Elsheimer.
Madonna and Child with Saint Anne (1610, 180x155cm; 991x809pix, 81kb) _ Saraceni painted this altarpiece for the first altar to the right in the Church of San Simeone Profeta, which was reconstructed and decorated by Cardinal Lancellotti in 1610. Scholars agree on attributing it to Saraceni, and as the commission is securely datable it constitutes (along with the Rest on the Flight into Egypt, securely dated to 1606) an important point of reference for the reconstruction of the painter's first Roman period. Compared to the 1606 Rest, which shows only the first timid hints of naturalism, here the artist displays a significant maturing and reveals an absorbtion of Caravaggesque method. The background landscape has been eliminated and replaced with a deep shadow throughout, in accordance with the tenets of the new naturalistic style. The figures, all concentrated in the foreground, are set much closer to the picture plane, accentuating the emotional intereaction between themselves and the viewer. The beautiful dove held by Saint Anne is a master passage of impressionistic brushwork, economically rendered with extremely rapid brushstrokes that are full of color and light. Likewise the cradle to the lower right, realized with an astonishing speed and lucid realistic effect, can be considered as a harbinger of the painting of Velázquez. This passage is an important parallel to the famous "basket" done by Borgianni in these same years.
Saint Cecilia and the Angel (1610, 172x139cm; 1021x805pix, 95kb) _ detail (597x995pix, 60kb) (The hand of the saint tuning her lute with a delicate movement, according to the instructions of an angel — not seen in this detail — next to her.) _ There is a long history of attributions of this painting to various artists. The attribution to Saraceni is accepted by the majority of art historians. However, the attribution to a non-Italian, Guy François, has been sustained by all the French critics, notwithstanding the absence of any confirmed Roman works by this artist. If the painting is compared with certified works of Saraceni and with those of Guy François (all executed after his return to Le Puy) it seems evident that neither of the two painters can be convincingly considered the author of this masterpiece. It is true nevertheless that one can identify in the execution of the painting some of the signature details shared by both artists, and some details peculiar to the style of one or the other. The most distinctive element of the picture, however, is the extraordinarily inventive composition, dominated by the enormous wings of the angel and by the diagonal of the bass viol. This instrument, along with the large lyre in the foreground, stretches across the entire surface of the canvas, as if to measure the space within. The courageous and original composition has no convincing analogues in the work of François, which is always rather more conventional. On the other hand, this composition seems to fit well alongside proven works by Saraceni, beginning with the Flight into Egypt at the Eremo dei Camaldoli (1606). The depiction of the subject is related to the vigorous revival of the cult of Saint Cecilia in the first few decades of the seventeenth century, following the 1599 discovery of the virgin martyr's incorrupt body during the course of excavations at the Roman church of Santa Cecilia. In this painting the patron saint of musicians and musical instrument makers is a beautiful young woman, who appears surrounded by instruments in this interior created by green and red draperies. She is tuning her lute with a delicate movement, according to the instructions of an angel next to her. Her devoted attention indicates that her skill in the handling of instruments is derived from God. The painter depicted the spiritual meeting of the angel and Cecilia through a poetic mood and the inner brilliance of the soft profiles. The elegance of forms and gestures is coupled with gentle and natural realism. The dominant element, as it fills nearly one-third of the composition, is the six-stringed viola da gamba, which the angel holds in his right hand. The viewer is overwhelmed by the near-concrete realism of its shell, material and outline. Next to it on the ground lie two wind instruments; in the centre under the opened sheet music, a violin. The painter even included a small harp in the right background. On the other hand, the organ is missing; thus there is nothing to refer to the text of the St Cecilia legend.
Saint Gregory the Great (1610, 102x73cm; 1080x770pix, 89kb) _ Formerly attributed to Caravaggio, but in the 19th century it was changed in favor of an attribution to Stern (a Flemish artist). Recently the painting was reassigned to an anonymous Italian imitator of Saraceni who was perhaps copying a lost work by the Venetian master. This painting can be identified with an entry in an unpublished inventory (dated 1802) of the Giustiniani collection, where it is listed as a work of Caravaggio. This attribution was maintained in the early Torlonia inventories until 1855, when it was changed in favor of an attribution to Stern. The canvas is extraordinary for its compositional originality, the intensity of the pictorial material, the rapid execution and the vivacity of chromatic range. All these qualities point to Saraceni, one of the first followers of Caravaggio. Yet at the moment, despite its tight Caravaggesque observation, the painting does not seem to be attributable with certainty to the Venetian master, on account of stylistic differences between it and certifiable works of the painter like the Madonna and Child with Saint Anne. Nor is the name of the Flemish artist Stern sustainable at this time, though such an attribution is partially justifiable on the basis of the lucid optical rendering of the details.
Venus and Mars (1610; 530x700pix, 98kb) with some 11 cavorting toddlers; all 13 pictured so destitute that they can't afford any clothing; before a drapery (big enough to make clothes for most of them) in a dark wooded landscape by a brook. Venus is sitting on Mars's lap, explaining to him her theory of heavier-than-air flight, and why Icarus failed, not having consulted her. Meanwhile one of the toddlers, behind her, is conducting an experiment with a scale model resembling a bird. Mars is fascinated by the military potential of this stupendous technological breakthrough, which is bound to make wholesale slaughter a lot easier.
The Rest on the Flight to Egypt (engraving after Saraceni, 30x23cm; 1204x920pix, 399kb)
 
^ >Born on 16 (04 Julian) June 1881: Natal'ya Sergeyevna Goncharova, Russian French Cubist painter, stage designer, printmaker, and illustrator, who died on 17 October 1962.
— She founded the avant~garde Rayonist movement (1910) with Mikhail Fyodorovich Larionov [03 Jun 1881 – 10 May 1964], whom she married in 1955. Both Larionov and Goncharova exhibited in the first Jack of Diamonds exhibition of avant-garde Russian art in Moscow (1910). In 1914 they went to Paris, where both achieved renown as designers for Sergey Diaghilev's Ballets Russes. During the 1920s they played a significant role within the École de Paris and continued to live and work in France until their deaths.
— Innovative painter, sculptor, and stage designer who was important as a founder, with Mikhail Larionov (her life-long collaborator-mate and late-life husband), of Rayonism (1910) and as a designer for the Ballets Russes. The daughter of an aristocratic family (great grand-daughter of Alexander Pushkin), Goncharova studied painting and sculpture at the Academy of Fine Arts in Moscow. Pupil of Paul Trubetskoy. After an early preoccupation with sculpture (which she began to exhibit in 1900) she began to paint seriously (1904), experimenting with the Cubist and Futurist styles. Goncharova and Larionov conceived of Rayonism as a synthesis of these movements. Rayonism sought to portray the spatial qualities of reflected light in two dimensions. In 1912 Goncharova took part in Roger Fry's Postimpressionist exhibition (London) and in the second exhibition of Der Blaue Reiter (Munich). Goncharova earned a lofty reputation in Moscow for her scenery and costume designs for the Kamerny Theatre. After she and Larionov moved to Paris in 1914 she became a designer for Sergei Diaghilev's Ballets Russes. Her vibrant, Byzantine-inspired designs for the ballet "Coq d'Or" are especially notable.
— Natalia Goncharova was born in Nagayevo village, near Tula, Russia. In 1892, she moved to Moscow to attend school. She studied at the Moscow Art School, first in the sculpture department under Pavel Trubetskoy (from 1898) and then in the painting department under Konstantin Korovin (1900-1909). In 1900, she met Mikhail Larionov, who encouraged her to paint and became her lifelong mate (they married in 1955). The following year, she enrolled at the Moscow Institute of Painting, Sculpture, and Architecture to study sculpture. Goncharova participated in an exhibition of Russian artists organized by Sergei Diaghilev at the 1906 Salon d’Automne in Paris. Her early work shows the influence of Impressionism, Fauvism, and Russian folk sculpture.
      Goncharova participated in numerous important exhibitions of new art in Moscow, including Jack of Diamonds (1910), The Donkey’s Tail (1912), and The Target (1913). Her early works were painted in Primitivist and Cubist styles. About 1912 Goncharova and Larionov fashioned a fusion of Cubo-Futurism and Orphism known as Rayism or Rayonism. Goncharova was represented at the second Blaue Reiter exhibition at Galerie Hans Goltz, Munich, in 1912 and the Erste deutsche Herbstsalon at the Der Sturm gallery in Berlin in 1913. About this time, Goncharova and Larionov began their collaboration with Diaghilev and his Ballets Russes, which lasted until the impresario’s death in 1929. In 1917, they settled permanently in Paris, and the following year their work appeared in the exhibition L’Art décoratif théâtral moderne at the Galerie Sauvage, Paris.
      Goncharova showed extensively during the 1920s and 1930s, often with Larionov, in Europe, the United States, and Japan. Although she never abandoned painting, much of her creative energy was directed toward stage decoration and book illustration. She designed costumes, settings, and drop curtains for international presentations of modern and classical ballets until she was in her 70s. In 1938, Goncharova became a French citizen and in 1955 she married Larionov. The following year she was given a retrospective at the Galerie de l’Institut in Paris. Goncharova died in Paris.
— Goncharova was born in Negaevo, and died in Paris. A descendant of the great poet Aleksandr Sergeevich Pushkin's wife, she was the daughter of Sergei Goncharov, an architect, and Ekaterina Il'ichna Beliaeva, but grew up in her grandmother's house in the Tula Province. She attended the Fourth Gymnasium for Girls in Moscow and in 1898 entered the Moscow School of Painting, Sculpture and Architecture as a sculpture student. At the school Goncharova met Mikhail Larionov who became her lifelong companion and encouraged her to leave sculpture for painting. Goncharova was attracted briefly to Impressionism and Symbolism, but her participation in the "Golden Fleece" exhibition introduced her to the styles of Gauguin [07 Jun 1848 – 08 May 1903], Matisse [31 Dec 1869 – 03 Nov 1954], Cézanne [19 January 1839 – 22 Oct 1906] and Toulouse-Lautrec [24 Nov 1864 – 09 Sep 1901] whose art would influence her development. In a series depicting the favorite theme of the Russian peasants working the land, this influence is revealed in both color and the approach to form. In 1910 Goncharova became one of the founding members of the "Jack of Diamond" group but later went her separate way to establish the "Donkey's Tail" group with Larionov. In 1912 the group held their first exhibition with more than 50 works from Goncharova, executed in a number of different styles. Goncharova was a connoisseur of lubki, Russian popular prints, and the titles of her works clearly betray this influence. Her use of conventions of icon painting is particularly evident in The Evangelists.
      In 1913 she entered her most productive period, painting dozens of canvases. In her Neo-primitive works she continued to explore the styles of Eastern and traditional art forms, but also experimented with Cubo-futurism (see The Cyclist, 1913), and adopted Larionov's new style of Rayonism. Her famous Cats (1912) and Green and Yellow Forest (1912) show how confidently she was able to work in the Rayonist style, developing her own artistic idiom independently of Larionov. In August 1913, Goncharova attracted international attention exhibiting over 700 paintings in an one-woman show . During this period she was, like Larionov, associated with the literary avant-garde. In 1914 Goncharova visited Paris to make designs for Diaghilev's production of Le coq d'or. Her designs, based on Eastern and Russian folk art, took Paris by storm. She also held a joint exhibition with Larionov at the Galerie Paul Guillaume. She returned to Moscow after the beginning of the war.
      At the request of Diaghilev, Larionov and Goncharova left Russia for Switzerland in June 1915. In 1916 they accompanied Diaghilev to Spain and Italy. Spain left an everlasting impression on Goncharova. She was especially moved by the bearing of Spanish women in their mantillas. From that moment on, Espagnoles became her favorite subject. In 1919 Larionov and Goncharova settled permanently in Paris; they were granted citizenship in 1938. During the Paris period, Goncharova became famous for her theatrical designs. In the 1920s she developed her own idiom for her series Espagnoles and for many paintings with bathers. Following Diaghilev's death in 1929, Goncharova's creative powers declined only to be briefly revitalized by the public rediscovery of Rayonism in 1948. After Larionov's stroke in 1950, Goncharova's health also started to decline, and, although the couple married in 1955, their last years were spent in poverty.

LINKS
–- Stage set design for act 1 of the opera-ballet Le coq d'or (1914, 45x70cm; 864x1244pix, 296kb)
–- Stage Design for Act I of the ballet Chota Roustaveli (1946, 54x72cm; 492x704pix, 101kb; _ ZOOM)
–- Ballet Chota Roustaveli: Project for the curtain (54x74cm; 393x545pix, 48kb _ ZOOM)
–- Costume for a Peasant Girl in the ballet Foire de Sorotchinsk (1940, 46x21cm; 707x446pix, 34kb; ZOOM)
–- l'Oiseau de Feu: Costume for the first Prince (47x31cm; 651x405pix, 47kb _ ZOOM to 1308x831pix, 169kb)
–- L'Oiseau de Feu: Costume for the 12 Simple Princesses (45x25cm; 636x354pix, 31kb _ ZOOM)
–- Costume for a Man Dancer in Ballet de Trèfle (1950, 31x20cm; 641x416pix, 42kb _ ZOOM)
Baignade (1911, 115x94cm)
Collecting Fruit
The Virgin, Costume design for the ballet La Liturgie (1915)
Costume design for Saint John the Divine for the ballet La Liturgie (624x395pix)
The Archangel Michael
— The Evangelists: Panel 1 _ Panel 2 _ Panel 3 _ Panel 4 (1910, each panel 204x58cm) _ Natalia Goncharova was one of the first Russian artists to embrace Neo-primitivism — a graphic style reminiscent of traditional folk art. She explored it with a unique energy and skill, and was influential in making icon painting a source of inspiration for 20th-century Russian artists. In addition, Goncharova's works painted in this style are especially important as examples of a "synthesis" of European style and Russian national tradition. The Evangelists are among Goncharova's first mature works devoted to a religious subject. The canvasses are remarkable for their skillful reconciliation of old and new influences in Russian art. Perhaps one of the most impressive aspects of these four paintings is their effective use of color, line, and composition to create a strong rhythmic whole. Goncharova manipulates these elements with such understanding and perception that when one looks at the four authors of the Gospels there are no distractions and no weak points -- only strength and security in a modern interpretation of tradition and native style. Both line and color become here "expressive entities in their own right" and convey the sense of calm spirituality and wisdom treasured by icon painters (97). What the Neo-primitivists of Goncharova's time might have treasured most however, was an almost childish "directness and simplicity" characteristic of folk art (97), which they tried to imitate in their works. Today, the paintings of the Evangelists may be admired for many reasons, and regardless of the basis for the viewer's appreciation, they definitely are an intriguing part of the Russian avant-garde movement
Cats (rayist perception in rose, black, and yellow) (1913, 85x84cm) _ Goncharova and Larionov experimented with contemporary French stylistic trends before developing a Neo-primitive vocabulary inspired by indigenous Russian folk art. In late 1912 the two artists fashioned a fusion of Cubo-Futurism and Orphism [more] known as Rayism. Cats, painted shortly thereafter, exemplifies the new style.
      Using intersecting vectors of color to depict refracted light rays, Rayist works recreate the surface play of light on objects. This perceptual approach to painting was based on scientific discoveries concerning the nature of vision, advances that had also influenced Neo-Impressionist color theories, the Cubist analysis of form, and the Futurist emphasis on dynamic lines. The nationalistic strain apparent in Italian Futurist manifestos also pervades Rayist tracts, in which the Russian theory is posited as a unique synthetic achievement of the East. In the preface to the catalogue of her 1913 Moscow retrospective exhibition, Goncharova wrote: “For me the East means the creation of new forms, an extending and deepening of the problems of color. This will help me to express contemporaneity—its living beauty—better and more vividly.”
      Cats, which appears to represent two black felines with a tabby in between, illustrates the Rayist view that objects may serve as points of departure for explorations on the canvas. Goncharova used darts of color to suggest the effects of light on the cats’ shiny coats and the way that adjacent surfaces reflect neighboring hues. The dynamic slashes of black and white evoke the energized, machine-inspired compositions of the Futurists.
      The artist’s brilliant color recalls Robert Delaunay’s exuberant depictions of the Eiffel Tower as well as Russian woodblock prints and painted trays. Cats also suggests the richly hued integration of animals and their environment that Franz Marc was developing contemporaneously in his own synthesis of Cubism and Futurism. Yet unlike Marc and other German Expressionist painters, Rayist painters did not seek to express spiritual goals through their art.

—(081016)

Died on a 16 June:

1945 Nicolás Rauric Petre
[02 Jul 1871–], Barcelona Catalan painter. Inició sus estudios en la Escuela de Bellas Artes de la Lonja de Barcelona. Allí asistió a las clases de Antonio Caba, Rigalt y Eliseo Meifrén. Posteriormente, amplió estudios en la Superior de San Fernando de Madrid y, más tarde, en Roma, París, Munich y Londres. Practicó el paisaje, la pintura de género y el bodegón. —(080615).

^ >1905 Johann Gottfried Steffan, Swiss painter born on 13 December 1815. He moved to Munich in 1833 after an apprenticeship as a lithographer in Wädenswil. He studied at the Akademie der Bildenden Künste under Peter von Cornelius [23 Sep 1783 – 06. Mar 1867], and the Polytechnikum in Munich. He was impressed by the Italian landscapes of Carl Rottmann [11 Jan 1797 – 07 Jul 1850] and decided to devote himself to landscape painting. He went to Italy in 1845 and to Paris in 1855; he subsequently began to concentrate on painting lake and mountain scenes, for example Lake Starnberg in a Storm (1873), at which he was highly successful. He undertook numerous study-visits to Bavaria and Switzerland, often accompanied by his students Traugott Schiess [1834–1869] and Otto Frölicher. In Munich Steffan became friendly with Rudolf Koller [21 May 1828 – 05 Nov 1905], Johann Caspar Bosshardt [1823–1887] and Arnold Böcklin, and under his leadership ‘die Schweizer’, as these artist–friends were known collectively, formed their own group. However, his circle of friends also included many German painters, such as Friedrich Voltz [1817–1886], Adalbert Waagen [1833–1898], Theodor Pixis [1831–1907] and Gabriel Max.
–- Angler near a river in a mountainous landscape (1851; 900x1153pix, 88kb)
–- View of Waterfalls (1863, 36x44cm; 610x800pix, 71kb)
–- Waterfall (1849, 46x60cm; 587x800pix, 40kb)
Waterfall In The Bavarian Alps (1877, 121x100cm)
–- Alpine landscape (1851; 510x425pix, 19kb) —(070615)


Born on a 16 June:


1867 René Seyssaud, French painter who died (full coverage) on 26 September 1952.

^ 1859 Paul Joanovich (or Joanowitz), Austrian artist who died in 1957.
— (Greek Saber Dance) (377x550pix, 68kb)

^ 1850 Aimé-Nicolas Morot, French painter who died on 12 August 1913. — {C'est Morot tout court, PAS Morot-Vache NI Morot-Sidvent.} Morot, a student of Alexandre Cabanel, was praised by critics and colleagues for his skillful combination of two seemingly incompatible modes of painting. Making use of the innovations in light and color pioneered by the Impressionists, he satisfied a taste for exacting realism spurred on at the turn of the century by advances in photography. — Ses parents, d'un milieu alsacien modeste, le destine à un métier manuel. Un professeur de Nancy lui obtient une bourse de la ville pour lui permettre d'étudier le dessin à Paris. Il devient élève de Cabanel et de Jean-Léon Gérôme. Il épouse la fille de ce dernier. Il débute au Salon de 1873. Il reçoit le 1° prix de Rome la même année. Il devient membre de l'Institut en 1898 et reçoit le grand prix de l'Exposition Universelle de 1900, il devient professeur à l'Ecole des Beaux-Arts la même année. D'un tempérament curieux il a beaucoup voyagé en Orient.
–- S*#> Jacques Goldman enfant (1903, 90x50cm; 510x291pix, 30kb)
–- S*#> Nude with a Japanese umbrella (56x45cm; 799xpix, kb)

^ 1818 Filippo Palizzi, Italian painter who died on 11 (12?) September 1899. Brother of Giuseppe Palizzi [19 Mar 1812 – 10 Jan 1888], Nicola Palizzi [20 Feb 1820 – 25 Sep 1877], and Francesco Paolo Palizzi [16 Apr 1825 – 16 Mar 1871]. Filippo Palizzi studied from 1837 at the Reale Istituto di Belle Arti in Naples, where Morelli was among his fellow students. By this time Palizzi had adopted Realism both as a style and as a conviction. Less adapted to Smargiassi’s academic style of teaching, he soon moved to the free school led by Giuseppe Bonolis, where plein-air painting was taught in relation to aesthetic principles (similar to those advanced by the literary historian and critic Francesco de Sanctis) and to the study of perspective. Palizzi’s experiments in Realism were probably influenced less by the example of Bonolis, who still adhered to Neo-classical conventions, than by de Sanctis’s principle that artistic form should depend on content. Such principles gave Palizzi’s work a degree of ethical rigor. — Stabilitosi a Napoli nel 1832, Filippo Palizzi fu allievo dell'Angelini, dello Smargiassi e di Camillo Guerra all'Accademia; ma se ne staccò ben presto, attratto dalla "Scuola di Posillipo", di cui adottò la consuetudine del lavoro all'aria aperta, rifiutandone invece le tendenze romantiche e le inflessioni sentimentali. Il Palizzi fu il pittore dei soggetti umili, paesaggi, animali, scene della vita dei campi, con analisi del particolare e con la ricerca degli effetti di luce. E' uno dei migliori rappresentanti della scuola verista napoletana. — Frequenta il Reale Istituto di Belle Arti solo per pochi mesi, intollerante dell'insegnamento di Smargiassi. Intraprende gli studi dal vero, ma la sua produzione esita tra il rinnovamento e l'influenza accademica. I suoi primi dipinti, che trattano soggetti romantico popolari in un tono ancora neoclassico, gli fanno guadagnare la stima del re dal quale riceve la commissione di alcune tele. Grazie al confronto con l'esperienza maturata dal fratello Giuseppe in Francia, può dare una svolta decisiva al suo percorso artistico. Decide di recarsi a Parigi in occasione dell'Esposizione del 1855 e di fare un viaggio in Europa per aggiornarsi sulle avanguardie. I dipinti di questa fase mostrano il determinante apporto del realismo che si manifesta nell'indagine luministica più attenta e nella resa particolareggiata e meticolosa dei dettagli naturalistici. Il suo atteggiamento di fedeltà nei confronti della realtà lo porta a ritrarre con scrupoloso zelo i riflessi dell'acqua, il pelo arruffato degli animali, soggetti prediletti, fasci d'erba e gli elementi della natura che ha modo di osservare. Questa spiccata sensibilità verista si rilevare nel bellissimo dipinto Olanda, composizione di ampio respiro, ospitato nella Pinacoteca. Dopo gli anni sessanta sperimenta gli effetti di controluce nelle scene ambientate negli interni, perlopiù stalle e ovili; rafforza, inoltre, il chiaroscuro guardando probabilmente alla pittura napoletana di influenza caravaggesca. Si cimenta anche nella pittura di storia, realizzando l'Ettore Fieramosca, ora presso la Pinacoteca Civica, e bozzetti su militari e garibaldini. Nel 1892 dona circa trecento studi alla Galleria Nazionale d'Arte Moderna di Roma, e lascia, nel 1898, un altro gruppo di opere alla Galleria dell'Accademia di Napoli.— Filippo Palizzi's students included Michele Cammarano, Gaetano Esposito, Francesco Netti.
Dopo il diluvio universrale (1863; 660x1000pix, 89kb)
L'ora del pasto (1865; 749x1000pix, 133kb)
Contadinella con pecora su campo di grano (1864)
Filomena (1864)
Capre al pascolo (1866)
Contemplazione (1872)
In villa (1877)
Agave e contadinella
La pastorella (468x600pix, 73kb) a big sheep and a small shepherdess
Interno di stalla
Campo di grano
Bufalo
Ritratto di uomo in un bosco (1856)
Olanda (1855)
San Teodoro (1840)
Muta di cani
Il profumo dell'erba (51x38cm; 506x753pix, 53kb)

^ 1712 (28 Mar ?) Johann Wolfgang Baumgartner, German draftsman, engraver, and painter who died before (or on ?) 07 Sept 1761.After being trained as a blacksmith by his father, he learnt the art of glass painting in Salzburg. Following travels through Austria, Hungary, and Italy, Baumgartner settled in Augsburg in late 1733, and there became a leading painter and draftsman. His style belongs to the South German Rococo with highly finished drawings, paintings, and frescoes. He is best known for his fresco decorations in churches, and is also known for the hundreds of rococo designs he made for the engravers of Augsburg, then a major publishing center for the decorative arts. — LINKS —(080614)

^ 1686 Francesco Antonio Simonini (or Simoncini, Simonetti, Simoni), Italian painter who died in 1753. He was trained by Pier Ilario Spolverini [1657–1734] in his native Parma and became a successful painter of battle scenes. It is probable that the young painter soon moved to Florence, where he studied the paintings of Jacques Courtois and copied 24 of his battle scenes. Later it is said that Simonini visited Rome. He certainly worked in Bologna, where he was documented as the ‘painter of the most eminent Cardinal Ruffo, Papal ambassador in Bologna’, a post the Cardinal held from August 1721 to August 1727. — Although known principally as a battle-painter Simonini also painted landscapes and 'subject pictures' such as Landscape with a carriage held up by horsemen. From 1730 to 1745 he worked as painter, draftsman, and advisor to Johann Matthias von der Schulenberg, the commander of the Venetian army against the Turks. Simonini participated in a number of Von der Schulenberg's military campaigns, thus explaining the large number of cavalry scenes that are attributed to him. His distinctive style, with its rapid brushwork and vivid use of color, was formed under the influence of his Venetian contemporaries and, in particular, of the view-painter Marco Ricci. — Ragguardevole figura di battaglista, dopo un primo apprendistato a Parma presso il Brescianino e lo Spolverini, si traferisce poi a Firenze e a Roma, dove ha modo di studiare le opere del Borgognone. Dopo aver lavorato per un certo periodo a Bologna, approda a Venezia e tra il 1733 e il 1741 lavora per il maresciallo Giovanni Mattia won Schulemburg. Oltre che come pittore di cavalletto opera anche come frescante lavorando in palazzo Cappello a Venezia e nella villa Pisani a Stra'. Per lo Schulemburg esplica anche le mansioni di consulente artistico e di restauratore e, alla sua morte (1749), si trasferisce a Firenze, dove forse muore. — LINKS
–- Landscape with an elegant couple in a carriage being held up by horsemen, villagers nearby (61x96cm; 1002x1575pix, 139kb)
A Military Campaign Scene (38x66cm; 420x666pix, 41kb) _ The figures on horseback at the left, who look out over the battlefield, appear to be officers. This painting was previously attributed to J.M. Laroon, and catalogued as British School.
Esercito in marcia (45x71cm; 347x559cm, 76kb) _ Il dipinto si articola scenograficamente con il procedere dei cavalli e delle salmerie che si snodano dal monte verso la valle, dove sono passati in rassegna da un gruppo di ufficiali a cavallo. La pennellata guizzante e luminosa che restituisce con bella evidenza il luccicare delle divise e dei finimenti, la brillante attitudine narrativa e il sagace dosaggio delle luci e delle ombre avevano richiamato in un primo momento il gusto veneteggiante del parmense Ilario Spolverini. Ma non c'e' dubbio che il dipinto appartenga invece al non meno noto e brillante Francesco Antonio Simonini: suoi sono infatti la scioltezza esecutiva e il modo efficacemente compendiario con cui sono realizzate le figure, di cui la luce del sole fa brillare le divise lucenti.
Deux Cavaliers Hongrois, Chefs de Hussards Impériaux (1740, oval 35x27cm; 512x409pix, 64kb) —(080614)

+ ZOOM IN ++ ZOOM IN +From the Great Illustrated Illustrious Tyrannothesaurus of Cacoillogical Quotations:

“The politician was gone but unnoticed, like the period after the Dr. on a Dr Pepper can.”
— Wayne Goode, Madison, Alabama

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