Friday, September 30, 2011

Dali, Salvador

Woman at the Window (Muchacha en la ventana)
oil on board
41 x 29 inches (105 x 74 cm)
Gala-Salvador Dali Foundation, Figueres, Spain

Salvador Dali (Spanish, 1904-1989).
The light on the back of the girl (Ana Maria, his sister), enhances one of Dali’s favorite employed elements.
Salvador and Ana Maria were very close each other, particularly after the death of their mother. She was his only female model until Gala replaced her in 1929.
The landscape behind the window is the bay of Cadaques, where Dali used to stay in the summer.
Garcia Lorca kept great memories about the view from that window at the awakens, like wonderful, as a beautiful dream.

Thursday, September 29, 2011

De Las Mercedes, Franck

Rip n Tear
Acrylic and collage on canvas
64" x 46" (163 x 117cm)
FDLM Studio (Painter's Studio in NJ, USA)

Franck de Las Mercedes (1972~ ) is a Nicaraguan born painter raised in New York City and has emerged as one of the country's most prolific visual artists in recent years. His art combines expressionism, photography and collage to illustrate the aftermath of emotionally charged experiences and depictions of how he sees the world around him.
His works have been featured on numerous national and international media including, LatiNation, CNN En Español, Selecciones (Reader's Digest), Art Business News, Museum VIEWS, American Style and The Artist's magazine, etc.
"My work is a personal exploration of my psyche and the emotions that emerge in the present, triggered by memory or current experiences. Observing my feelings and body sensations without questioning them or intellectualizing them, allows me to release the strength of those emotions onto the surface."

Wednesday, September 28, 2011

Pollock, Jackson

Figure 1
Jackson Pollock's ‘Convergence’ (1952)
oil on canvas
The Pollock-Krasner Foundation, New York

The abstract expressionist Paul Jackson Pollock (1912 – 1956), known as Jackson Pollock, nicknamed ‘Jack the Dripper,’ is one of America's most important artists. He is best known for his ‘action’ paintings, executed by dripping, pouring, and splashing liquid paint onto horizontal canvases on the floor.
After struggling with alcoholism for his entire adult life, Pollock, died in a single-car crash in his Oldsmobile convertible while driving under the influence of alcohol.
"Died. Jackson Pollock, 44, bearded shock trooper of modern painting, who spread his canvases on the floor, dribbled paint, sand and broken glass on them, smeared and scratched them, named them with numbers...; at the wheel of his convertible in a side road crack-up near East Hampton, N.Y." (Time Magazine, August 20, 1956)

Tuesday, September 27, 2011

Schiele, Egon

Sitting Woman with Legs Drawn Up (The Artist's Wife)
Gouache and black chalk
460 x 305 mm
Národni Gallery, Prague

Austrian expressionist artist Egon Leo Adolf Schiele (1890 - 1918).
Schiele was a major figurative painter of the early 20th century. His work is noted for its intensity.
He was at odds with art critics and society for most of his brief life. Even more than Gustav Klimt (at first strongly influenced by Klimt), Schiele made eroticism one of his major themes and was briefly imprisoned for obscenity in 1912.
His treatment of the nude figure suggests a lonely, tormented spirit haunted rather than fulfilled by sexuality.
"Life is a disease that leads to death." "Art can not be modern, art is primordially eternal."

Sunday, September 25, 2011

Gogh, Vincent van

Branches with Almond Blossom
oil on canvas
73.5 x 92 cm
Rijksmuseum Vincent van Gogh, Vincent van Gogh Foundation, Amsterdam

Vincent Willem van Gogh (1853-1890), son of a Protestant pastor, was a Dutch postimpressionist painter whose work represents the archetype of expressionism, the idea of emotional spontaneity in painting.
Early in life he displayed a moody, restless temperament that was to thwart his every pursuit. By the age of 27 he had been in turn a salesman in an art gallery, a French tutor, a theological student, and an evangelist among the miners at Wasmes in Belgium.

In his final letter to Theo (younger brother), Vincent admitted that as he did not have any children, he viewed his paintings as his progeny.
"At the beginning of the twentieth century Van Gogh gave the Expressionists a new painterly language which enabled them to go beyond surface appearance and penetrate deeper essential truths. It is no coincidence that at this very moment Freud was also mining the depths of that essentially modern domain—the subconscious. This beautiful and intelligent exhibition places Van Gogh where he firmly belongs; as the trailblazer of modern art." (critic Sue Hubbard)


The Plum Orchard In Kameido
(Kameido Ume Yashiki, from "One Hundred Famous Views of Edo #30")
13.25 × 8.625 in (33.7 × 21.9 cm)
woodblock print
The Brooklyn Museum

Hiroshige Utagawa (1797 – 1858) was a Japanese ukiyo-e artist, and one of the last great artists in that tradition. He was also referred to as Hiroshige Andō.
Legend has it that Hiroshige determined to become a ukiyo-e artist when he saw the prints of his near-contemporary, Hokusai. Until the death of Hokusai in 1849, their works competed for the same customers.
Hiroshige’s works greatly influenced French Impressionists such as Monet and Gogh.

ukiyo-e ; a genre of Japanese woodblock prints and paintings produced between the 17th and the 20th centuries, featuring motifs of landscapes, tales from history, the theatre, and pleasure quarters. It is the main artistic genre of woodblock printing in Japan.

Saturday, September 24, 2011


Sunshū Ejiri, in Suruga Province
Part of the series Thirty-six Views of Mount Fuji (no. 18)
First publication: ca. 1830
woodblock print

Hokusai Katsushika (1760 – 1849) was a Japanese artist, ukiyo-e painter of the Edo Shogun period.
Thirty-six Views of Mount Fuji is an ukiyo-e series of large, color woodblock prints by him. The series depicts Mount Fuji in differing seasons and weather conditions from a variety of different places and distances.
His influences stretched to his contemporaries in nineteenth century Europe whose new style Art Nouveau, or Jugendstil in Germany, was influenced by him.

Friday, September 23, 2011

Klee, Paul

The Golden Fish
Oil and watercolor on paper, mounted on cardboard
50 x 69 cm (19 1/8 x 27 in)
Kunsthalle, Hamburg

Paul Klee (1879 – 1940) was born in Switzerland, and is considered both a Swiss and a German painter.
Klee was a natural draftsman who experimented with and eventually mastered color theory, and wrote extensively about it; his lectures Writings on Form and Design Theory, published in English as the Paul Klee Notebooks, are considered so important for modern art that they are compared to the importance that Leonardo da Vinci's A Treatise on Painting had for Renaissance.
He had a natural sensitivity to music, the least material of the arts, and it runs through all his work, clarifying his spellbinding color and dematerializing his images.

The Golden Fish, gliding through the kingdom of its underwater freedom, is a magical fish with runic signs upon his body, scarlet fins, and a great pink flower of an eye. He hangs majestically in the deep, dark blue magic of the sea, which is luminous with secret images of fertility.

Meyer von Bremen, Johann Georg

An Interrupted Moment
Oil on canvas
29.8 x 36.8 cm (11.73" x 14.49")
Private collection

Johann Georg Meyer (1813 – 1886), commonly known as Meyer von Bremen, was a German painter who specialized in Biblical, peasant, and family scenes.
Started painting biblical subjects, then traveled in the Hessian, Bavarian, and Swiss mountain districts, studying the people for his genre scenes, which have since become wildly known.

Thursday, September 22, 2011


Joanna of Aragon
Oil on canvas
76 x 61 cm (30 x 24")
Musée du Louvre

Joanna of Aragon was an infanta of the Kingdom of Aragon.
According to Giorgio Vasari, an Italian painter, writer, historian, and architect, who is famous today for his biographies of Italian artists, the head only is by Raphael, the remainder by Giulio Romano (a pupil of Raphael).

Raffaello Sanzio da Urbino (1483 – 1520), better known simply as Raphael, was an Italian painter and architect of the High Renaissance, celebrated for the perfection and grace of his paintings and drawings. Together with Michelangelo and Leonardo da Vinci, he forms the traditional trinity of great masters of that period.
He died on his thirty-seventh birthday, April 6, 1520, because of acute illness, which lasted fifteen days, and was buried in the Pantheon amidst universal mourning and acclaim.
His funeral was extremely grand, attended by large crowds. The inscription in his marble sarcophagus reads: "Here lies that famous Raphael by whom Nature feared to be conquered while he lived, and when he was dying, feared herself to die."

Wednesday, September 21, 2011

Balthus ; (Balthasar Klossowski de Rola)

Girl with Cat
Oil on board
34 1/2 x 30 1/2 in. (87.6 x 77.5 cm)
Lindy and Edwin Bergman Collection

Balthasar Klossowski de Rola (1908–2001), best known as Balthus, whose style is primarily classical, was an esteemed but controversial Polish-French modern artist.
Many of Balthus's paintings show young girls in an erotic context. Balthus insisted that his work was not erotic but that it recognized the discomforting facts of children's sexuality.
His work shows numerous influences, including the writings of Emily Brontë, the writings and photography of Lewis Carroll, and the paintings of Masaccio, Piero della Francesca, Poussin, Ingres, Goya, Jean-Baptiste Camille Corot, Courbet, Edgar Degas and Paul Cézanne, etc.
Although his technique and compositions were inspired by pre-renaissance painters, there also are eerie intimations of contemporary surrealists like de Chirico. Painting the figure at a time when figurative art was largely ignored, he is widely recognised as an important 20th century artist.

Tuesday, September 20, 2011

Bierstadt, Albert

Western Kansas
Oil on canvas
28 x 39 1/2 inches (71.12 x 100.33 cm)
Public collection

Albert Bierstadt (1830 – 1902) was a German-American painter best known for his lush, sweeping landscapes of the American West.
The colors he used are also not always true. He painted what he believed was the way things should be: water is ultramarine, vegetation is lush and green, etc.
He was elected a member of the National Academy; he received medals in Austria, Bavaria, Belgium, and Germany; and his paintings remain popular.

Tanguy, Yves

The Absent Lady
Oil on canvas
115 x 89.5 cm
Kunstsammlung Nordrhein-Westfalen, Dusseldorf

Yves Tanguy (1900-55).
French-born American painter, originally a merchant seaman.
Tanguy's most characteristic works are painted in a scrupulous technique reminiscent of that of Dalí, but his imagery is highly distinctive, featuring half marine and half lunar landscapes in which amorphous nameless objects proliferate in a spectral dream-space.
In January 1955, Tanguy suffered a fatal stroke at Woodbury, Connecticut. His body was cremated and his ashes preserved until the death of his wife, Kay Sage, in 1963. Later, his ashes were scattered by his friend on the beach at Douarnenez in his beloved Brittany, together with those of his wife.

Kay Sage met Yves in Europe just before WW II and convinced him to join her in New York. Yves then began to receive recognition of his work. The couple settled in Woodbury where each one had their own studio. Badly affected by the sudden death of Yves in 1955, Kay went blind, little by little, but nevertheless did finish the Complete Catalogue of Yves’ work before committing suicide in 1963.

Monday, September 19, 2011

Bruegel, Pieter the Elder

Winter Landscape with a Bird Trap
38 x 56 cm
Wiltshire, Wilton House

Pieter Bruegel the Elder (about 1525-69) was a renaissance painter, generally considered the greatest Flemish painter of the 16th century.
Bruegel specialized in genre paintings populated by peasants, often with a large landscape element, but also painted religious works.
Making the life and manners of peasants the main focus of a work was rare in painting in Brueghel's time, and he was a pioneer of the Netherlandish genre painting.

Cranach, Lucas the Elder

The Ill-Matched Couple (The Fee)
Oil on wood
108 × 119 cm (42.5 × 46.9 in)
Nationalmuseum, Stockholm

German Renaissance painter.
He was a court painter and is known for his portraits, both of German princes and those of the leaders of the Protestant Reformation, whose cause he embraced with enthusiasm, becoming a close friend of Martin Luther.
He had a large workshop and many works exist in different versions.

Sunday, September 18, 2011

Cézanne, Paul

Still Life with Curtain and Flowered Pitcher
(Nature morte avec rideau et pichet fleuri)
c. 1899
Oil on canvas
21 1/2 x 29 1/8 in (54.7 X 74 cm)
The Hermitage Museum, Leningrad

Paul Cézanne (1839 – 1906) was a French artist and Post-Impressionist painter whose work laid the foundations of the transition from the 19th century conception of artistic endeavour to a new and radically different world of art in the 20th century.
Cézanne can be said to form the bridge between late 19th century Impressionism and the early 20th century's new line of artistic enquiry, Cubism.
The line attributed to both Matisse and Picasso that Cézanne "is the father of us all" cannot be easily dismissed.

Pynacker, Adam

Landscape with a Goatherd
Oil on panel
39 x 61 cm
Art Museum, Saint Louis

Pynacker, Adam (1620/21 - 1673)
Dutch landscape painter, active mainly in Delft and in Amsterdam.
He travelled to Italy and was gone for three years.
He was one of the outstanding Dutch exponents of Italianate landscapes.

Saturday, September 17, 2011

Wyeth, Andrew

The Intruder
30.5 x 50.2 in. / 77.5 x 127.6 cm.
Tempera on Panel

Andrew Newell Wyeth (1917 – 2009) was a visual artist, primarily a realist painter, working predominantly in a regionalist style.
He was one of the most famous US painters of the twentieth century and often named the "Painter of the People" as a result of his popularity with the American people.

"My aim is to escape from the medium with which I work. To have no residue of technical mannerisms to stand between my expression and the observer. To seek freedom through significant form and design rather than through the diversion of so-called free and accidental brush handling. In short, to dissolve into clear air all impediments that might interrupt the flow of pure enjoyment. Not to exhibit craft, but rather to submerge it, and make it rightfully the handmaiden of beauty, power, and emotional content." - Andrew Wyeth (1943)

Friday, September 16, 2011

Segantini, Giovanni

Ave Maria on the Lake
93 x 120 cm (36,5 x 47,2 inches)
Oil on canvas
Segantini Museum, St. Moritz, on permanent loan from the Otto Fischbacher Giovanni Segantini Stiftung

Giovanni Segantini (1858 - 1899) was an Italian painter known for his large pastoral landscapes of the Alps.
He was one of the most famous artists in Europe in the late 19th century, and his paintings were collected by major museums. He was active in Switzerland for most of his life.

Nature and the connections of people to nature are the core themes of his art. After he moved to the mountains he wrote "I am now working passionately in order to wrest the secret of Nature's spirit from her. Nature utters the eternal word to the artist: love, love; and the earth sings life in spring, and the soul of things reawakens."
He said "I've got God inside me. I don't need to go to church."
Ave Maria on the Lake, 1886, is one of Segantini’s most famous paintings.

Thursday, September 15, 2011

Vigee-Lebrun, Marie Louise Elisabeth

oil on canvas
Galleria degli Uffizi, Italy

Marie Louise Elisabeth Vigee-Lebrun (1755 - 1842).
French painter, and is recognized as the most famous female painter of the 18th century.
Her style is generally considered Rococo and shows interest in the subject of neoclassical painting.

Hunt, William Holman

The Lady of Shalott
c. 1886-1905
Oil on canvas
74 x 57 1/2 inches
Ella Gallup Sumner and Mary Catlin Sumner Collection,Wadsworth Atheneum, Hartford, Connecticut

William Holman Hunt (1827 - 1910).
English painter, and one of the founders of the Pre-Raphaelite Brotherhood.
Hunt's paintings were notable for their great attention to detail, vivid colour and elaborate symbolism.
For Hunt, the world itself should be read as a system of visual signs and it was the duty of the artist to reveal the correspondence between sign and fact.
"The Lady of Shalott" is a Victorian ballad by the English poet Alfred, Lord Tennyson (1809–1892).
Tennyson focused on the Lady's isolation in the tower and her decision to participate in the living world.

Wednesday, September 14, 2011

Kahlo, Frida

Self Portrait dedicated to Dr. Eloesser
oil on board
59.5 x 40 cm
Private Collection, USA

Frida Kahlo de Rivera (1907 – 1954) was a Mexican painter.
The dedication inscribed on the banderole at the bottom reads: "I painted my portrait in the year 1940 for Doctor Leo Eloesser, my doctor and my best friend. With all my love. Frida Kahlo."
In thanks for the treatment that stabilized her condition, she painted this self-portrait for her Dr. Eloesser (Towards the end of 1939, Frida began to suffer increased back pain and developed an acute fungal infection in her right hand).

The earrings she is wearing were a gift from Pablo Picasso whom she met while in Paris. The hand on the banderole as well as on the earrings, makes reference at what is called in Mexico "milagros". Milagros are pieces made of wax or ivory shaped in the form of the part of the human body that the person wants to be healed, and left on the altar of the Saint they pray to.The necklace of thorns around her neck is a reminder of the pain from which Dr. Eloesser freed her.

Kahlo, Frida

Self-Portrait in a Velvet Dress
oil on canvas
79 x 58 cm
Private Collection Bequest of Alejandro Arias Mexico City

This is Frida's first self-portrait. It was painted as s gift for her student boyfriend, Alejandro Gomez Arias, who had left her. It was given as a token of love by which she hoped to restore his affection and keep her in his thoughts. Her plea for his love worked and not long after Alejandro received the portrait, they were rejoined.

Frida Kahlo de Rivera (1907 – 1954) was a Mexican painter, and perhaps best known for her self-portraits.
She died on July 13, 1954, soon after turning 47. A few days before her death she wrote in her diary: "I hope the exit is joyful — and I hope never to return — Frida".

Tuesday, September 13, 2011

Harunobu Suzuki

Girl at Shrine
late 1760s
woodblock print (Ukiyo-e)

Suzuki, Harunobu (1724? – 1770) was a Japanese woodblock print artist, one of the most famous in the Ukiyo-e style.
He was an innovator, the first to produce full-color prints (nishiki-e) in 1765.
Much about Harunobu's life is unknown.


"Tokaido Gojusan Tsugi no Uchi" (Fifty-three Stations of the Tokaido) Yui.
13.7 inches (34.7 cm) x 8.8 inches(22.3 cm)
Woodblock print.

Hiroshige (1797-1858)
Utagawa Hiroshige was a Japanese ukiyo-e artist, and one of the last great artists in that tradition.
He was also referred to as Andō Hiroshige.
In 1856, Hiroshige "retired from the world," becoming a Buddhist monk; this was the year he began his One Hundred Famous Views of Edo.
He died aged 62 during the great Edo cholera epidemic of 1858.
Just before his death, he left a poem:
"I leave my brush in the East
And set forth on my journey.
I shall see the famous places in the Western Land."
(The Western Land in this context refers to the strip of land by the Tōkaidō between Kyoto and Edo, but it does double duty as a reference to the Paradise of the Amida Buddha).

Monday, September 12, 2011

Giotto di Bondone

Lamentation (The Mourning of Christ)
72.84 in. wide x 78.74 in. high
Cappella del'Arena, Padua

Giotto di Bondone (c. 1267 - 1337).
Florentine painter and architect.
Giotto is generally considered the first in a line of great artists who contributed to the Italian Renaissance.
Giotto lived and worked at a time when people's minds and talents were first being freed from the shackles of medieval restraint. He dealt largely in the traditional religious subjects, but he gave these subjects an earthly, full-blooded life and force.

The subject is the mourning over the dead body of Christ, with the Virgin embracing her Son for the last time. He shows us so convincingly how each figure reflects the grief of the tragic scene that we sense the same grief in the cowering figures whose faces are hidden from us.

Mucha, Alphonse

Decorative panel
14 7/8 x 23 5/8 in. (38 x 60 cm)

Mucha, Alphonse (1860-1939)
Czech Art Nouveau painter and decorative artist, known best for his distinct style.
At the time of his death, Mucha's style was considered outdated. His son devoted much of his life to writing about him and bringing attention to his art.

Botticelli, Sandro

Primavera (partial detail)
c. 1485-1487
Tempera on panel
203 x 314 cm
Galleria degli Uffizi, Florence

Alessandro di Mariano di Vanni Filipepi, better known as Sandro Botticelli (c. 1445 – 1510) was a Florentine painter during the Early Renaissance.
Botticelli never wed, and expressed a strong aversion to the idea of marriage, a prospect he claimed gave him nightmares.
The popular view is that he suffered from unrequited love for Simonetta Vespucci, a married noblewoman. According to legend, she had served as the model for The Birth of Venus and recurs throughout his paintings, despite the fact that she had died years earlier, in 1476. Botticelli asked that when he die, he be buried at her feet in the Church of Ognissanti in Florence. His wish was carried out when he died some 34 years later, in 1510.

Sunday, September 11, 2011

De Morgan, Evelyn

86 x 198 cm (34.0 x 77.9 inches)
oil on canvas
London, The De Morgan Centre

Evelyn de Morgan (c.1850-1919), English painter.
Evelyn's family did not support her artistic talents so she studied in secret until at the age of 15.
On the morning of her seventeenth birthday, she recorded in her diary, "Art is eternal, but life is short..." "I will make up for it now, I have not a moment to lose." She went on to persuade her parents to let her go to art school. At first her family discouraged it, but in 1873 she was enrolled at the Slade School of Art, where she proved herself to be a prize winning pupil.

Saturday, September 10, 2011

Cross, Henri-Edmond

Rio san Trovaso, Venise
oil on canvas
92 x 73 cm (36,2 x 28,7 inches)
Galerie Daniel Malingue, Paris

Henri-Edmond Cross (1856 – 1910) was a French pointillist painter.
His early works, portraits and still lifes, were in the dark colors of realism, but after meeting with Claude Monet in 1883, he painted in the brighter colors of Impressionism.
He began his Pointillist period after spending time with Paul Signac in 1904.
Signac called Cross the lonely genius, ‘impassive and consistent thinker, who is simultaneously a passionate and strange dreamer’.
From year to year Cross’ palette became richer and richer; the strong colors of his late works are close to Fauvism, perhaps influenced by his acquaintance with Henri Matisse.

Friday, September 9, 2011

Anderson, Sophie Gengembre

Girl with Lilacs
Oil on canvas
8 3/4 x 7 5/8 inches (22.3 x 19.4 cm)
Private Collection

This painting hung over Lewis Carroll's fire place for years.
Sophie Gengembre Anderson (1823 – 1903) was a French-born British artist who specialised in genre painting of children and women, typically in rural settings. With the 1848 revolution her family moved to the United States, living in Ohio and Pennsylvania. There she met the American painter Walter Anderson. They married and moved back to London. They were great friends with Lewis Carroll - Alice in Wonderland.
Her paintings are full of hope and promise.

Anderson, Sophie Gengembre

No Walk Today
oil on canvas
39 x 50 cm (15,4 x 19,5 inches)
Private collection

Sophie Gengembre Anderson (1823 – 1903) was a French-born British artist.
Her genre was women and children mostly in rural settings. Her botanical work was said to be some of the best of her day.
A world record price for her work of more than £1 million was achieved by No Walk Today at Sotheby's in London in November 2008.

Thursday, September 8, 2011

Vigee-Lebrun, Marie Louise Elisabeth

Marie Antoinette in a Muslin dress
Oil on canvas
Collection of the prince Ludwig von Hessen und bei Rhein, Wolfsgarten Castle, Germany.

Marie Louise Elisabeth Vigee-Lebrun (1755 - 1842).
French painter, and is recognized as the most famous female painter of the 18th century.

Convicted of treason, Queen of France Marie Antoinette's final words before being executed by guillotine were spoken to the executioner after she stepped on his foot --
"Monsieur, I beg your pardon."
Marie Antoinette was the Queen of France during the French Revolution. She was disliked because of her Austrian ancestry and because of her arrogance and extravagance during a time when peasants were starving.
In 1789 Paris was seized by the revolutionaries and Marie Antoinette and her husband King Louis XVI were held as prisoners at the palace of Tuileries until 1792 when they were charged with treason. Both were sentenced to die by beheading. Louis was beheaded on Jan. 21, 1793 and Marie followed him to her death in October of that same year.

Holbein, Hans the Younger

Portrait of Henry VIII
Oil on panel
88,5 x 74,5 cm
Galleria Nazionale d'Arte Antica, Rome

Hans Holbein the Younger (c. 1497 — 1543) was a German artist.
He is best known as one of the greatest portraitists of the 16th century.
Henry VIII (1491-1547), second son of Henry VII, King of England from 1509.
Outstanding political and military figure, he was also remembered in history for his multiple and unsuccessful marriages.
In 1509, he married his brother’s widow, Catherine of Aragon.
In 1533, Anne Boleyn became his second wife.
In 1536, the Queen Catherine died and Anne Boleyn was accused of infidelity and executed.
The day after her execution Henry married Jane Seymore.

Wednesday, September 7, 2011

Jakuchu Ito

Old Pine Tree and White Phoenix
Japanese hanging scroll painting on silk fabric
Collection of Imperial Household Agency

Japanese painter of the mid-Edo-Shogun period (1600-1868) when Japan had closed its doors to the outside world.
Most of Jakuchu's works were in the form of hanging scrolls.
A very common theme among his work is birds, in particular chickens and roosters, though several of his more famous paintings depict cockatoos, parrots, and phoenixes.

Jakuchu Ito

Rising Sun and Phoenix
Japanese hanging scroll painting on silk fabric
Collection of Imperial Household Agency

Ito Jakuchu (1716 - 1800).
Japanese painter of the mid-Edo-Shogun period (1600-1868) when Japan had closed its doors to the outside world.
Many of his works display a great degree of experimentation with perspective, and with other very modern stylistic elements.
He held strong ties to Zen Buddhist ideals.

Jakuchu Ito

Chrysanthemums by a stream, with rocks
Japanese hanging scroll painting on silk fabric
Collection of Imperial Household Agency

Japanese painter of the mid-Edo-Shogun period (1600-1868) when Japan had closed its doors to the outside world.
His training in paintings was mostly derived from inspirations from nature and from examining Chinese paintings at Zen temples.
Many of his works display a great degree of experimentation with perspective, and with other very modern stylistic elements.

Tuesday, September 6, 2011

Dalí, Salvador

The Dream of Christopher Columbus
oil on canvas
410 cm × 284 cm (161.4 in × 111.8 in)
Salvador Dalí Museum, St. Petersburg, Florida

Salvador Domènec Felip Jacint Dalí i Domènech, Marquis de Púbol (1904 – 1989), known as Salvador Dalí, was a prominent Spanish Catalan surrealist painter.
This work is an ambitious homage to Dali's Spain.
It combines Spanish history, religion, art, and myth into a unified whole.
Columbus is depicted not as a middle-aged mariner, but as an adolescent boy in a classical robe to symbolize America as a young continent with its best years ahead of it.
The banner that Columbus is holding bears the likeness of Dali's wife, Gala.
Dalí, in a period of intense interest in Roman Catholic mysticism, symbolically portrayed Columbus bringing Christianity and the true church to a new world as a great and holy accomplishment.

Monday, September 5, 2011

Gogh, Vincent Willem van

Self-Portrait Dedicated to Paul Gauguin
Oil on canvas
60.5 x 49.4 cm (23 3/4 x 19 1/2 in)
Fogg Art Museum, Harvard University, Cambridge, MA, USA

Vincent Willem van Gogh (1853 – 1890) was a Dutch post-Impressionist painter whose work had a far-reaching influence on 20th century art for its vivid colors and emotional impact.
He has often been compared with Rembrandt in the number and expressiveness of his self-portraits but while Rembrandt's were distributed through a lifetime, van Gogh produced some thirty in all in the short space of five years.
In each there is the same extraordinary intensity of expression concentrated in the eyes but otherwise there is a considerable variety.
"in a picture I want to say something comforting as music is comforting. I want to paint men and women with that something of the eternal which the halo used to symbolize, and which we seek to communicate by the actual radiance and vibration of our coloring."

Sunday, September 4, 2011

Cot, Pierre-Auguste

Le Printemps (Springtime)
Oil on canvas
127 x 203.2 cm (4' 2" x 6' 8")
Collection of Fred and Sherry Ross (New Jersey, United States)

Pierre Auguste Cot (1837-1883) was a French painter.
In 1863 he made a successful debut at the Salon, and from the 1870s, his popularity grew quickly.
He created several works of lasting popularity, including Le Printemps, and The Storm.

Saturday, September 3, 2011

Millais, John Everett

Apple Blossoms
Oil on canvas
43 1/2 x 67 7/8 inches (110.5 x 172.7 cm)
Lady Lever Art Gallery, National Museums Liverpool, UK

Sir John Everett Millais (1829 – 1896) was an English painter.
This painting illustrates the transience of human life and the inevitable passing of youth and beauty.
The scythe at the right is a 'memento mori', reminding us of the coming summer and harvest and the harvest reaped by time and death.
Millais' works never failed to elicit praise.
His remarkable technique lent his canvases a unique distinction.

Friday, September 2, 2011

Ernst, Max

At the First Clear Word
Oil on plaster on canvas
Kunstsammlung Nordrhein-Westfalen, Dusseldorf
Mural from Paul Eluard's house in Eaubone, later transferred to canvas

Max Ernst (1891 – 1976) was a German painter.
He was one of the primary pioneers of the Dada movement and Surrealism.
He never received any formal artistic training. In 1910-1914 he studied philosophy and psychiatry at Bonn University and took a deep interest in painting.
In the 1950s Ernst got world acclaim.
In his late works the artist returned to the subjects of his early, Dada period.

Thursday, September 1, 2011

Stokes, Marianne Preindelsberger

Aucassin and Nicolette
Oil on Canvas
49 x 32 in
Private Collection

Marianne Preindelsberger Stokes (1855-1927).
Austrian painter who settled in England after her marriage.
She was considered one of the leading artists in Victorian England.
'Aucassin and Nicolette' is perhaps the best known of all French tales, these 13th-century lovers were thwarted by a proud and cruel father. Marianne Stokes was influenced by the rustic naturalists, yet often painted scenes of medieval romance to showcase her talents.