Monday, February 7, 2011
!00 paintings an artist should know, luxury edition 11
26) The white hat by Jean-Baptiste Greuze 1725-1805
The French painters of this era had a lusty and worldly streak and they made paintings that had a bawdy edge to them. Their swirling and mannerist paintings charm and titillate. Their execution made them high art, but their subject matter made them better for decorating the bedroom. Greuze painted wonderful portraits and genre scenes, but wanted badly to be a historical painter, something for which he evidently had no aptitude. He went from great success to a death in abject poverty, like Rembrandt he squandered a great fortune.
27) The Swing, by Jean-Honore Fragonard 1732-1806
Fragonard was a prolific rococo painter who was greatly influenced by Tiepelo. This is more boudoir art. After great success with the aristocracy his career was ruined by the French revolution as his clientele lost their heads to Dr Guillotines gentle machinery. He died forgotten after trying to reinvent himself as a neoclassicist, the opposite style of the paintings for which he was known and remembered.
28) Portrait of Marie-Louise O"Murphy Francois Boucher 1703-1770
The daughter of an Irish shoemaker who became the mistress of the king. I am gong to avoid telling you how old she was when this was painted, morals and the law were different then. Still it is voluptuous and lovely, and ranks with the best figure painting. Besides being an extremely successful painter Boucher designed tapestries for Gobelins and his work was often reproduced on elegant china. The famous and VERY true quote from Boucher is;
"Nature is too green, and badly lit"