Monday, April 5, 2010

RURAL AND URBAN FRENCH LIFE





Camille Pissarro
Self portrait, 1873
From Wikipedia


"Living in Saint Thomas in 1852, (although) employed in a well-paying business, I could not endure the situation any longer, and without thinking, I abandoned all I had there and fled to Caracas, thus breaking the bonds that tied me to bourgeois life. What I suffered is incredible, but I have lived: what I am suffering now is terrible, much worse even than when I was young, full of zeal and enthusiasm. Now I am convinced that my future is dead. Yet I think that if I had to start all over again, I would not hesitate to follow the same path."
Here, in a rare autobiographical flashback at the end of a letter to the painter, dealer, and collector Eugène Murer, forty-eight-year-old Camille Pissarro looked back in 1878 to the beginning of his artistic career, when, at twenty-two, he left his native Saint Thomas for Caracas. This letter sets the tone for any interpretative analysis of Pissarro's work by placing special emphasis on a concept central throughout Pissarro's correspondence: freedom. It stresses the acts of self-liberation and self-assertion which inaugurated the young Pissarro's career as he set off on that initial voyage, leaving behind family ties, a secure income, and a comfortable position as a clerk in order to venture on a new life as an artist.
(the Artchive)
Pissarro painted rural and urban French life, particularly landscapes in and around Pontoise, as well as scenes from Montmartre. His mature work displays an empathy for peasants and laborers, and sometimes evidences his radical political leanings. He was a mentor to Paul Cézanne and Paul Gauguin and his example inspired many younger artists, including Californian Impressionist Lucy Bacon.
Pissarro's influence on his fellow Impressionists is probably still underestimated; not only did he offer substantial contributions to Impressionist theory, but he also managed to remain on friendly, mutually respectful terms with such difficult personalities as Edgar Degas, Cézanne and Gauguin. Pissarro exhibited at all eight of the Impressionist exhibitions. Moreover, whereas Monet was the most prolific and emblematic practitioner of the Impressionist style, Pissarro was nonetheless a primary developer of Impressionist technique.
(Wikipedia)
Camille Pissarro was born on July 10, 1830 on the Caribbean island of St. Thomas, Danish West Indies; to Abraham Gabriel Pissarro, of Sephardic (or "Morrano") Jewish ancestry, and Rachel Manzano-Pomié, a Dominican of Spanish descent.
The Pissarros operated a dry goods store in what is now known as the Pissarro Building, 14 Dronnigens Gade in Queen's Quarter, Charlotte Amalie. Overlooking the main street, the family's upstairs residence was a spacious apartment. Large shuttered windows and high ceilings let breezes through during the hot summer months.
It was a busy time for the little port town of Charlotte Amalie. Dozens of merchant sailing ships would come to call every week with trade goods; during the age of sail, "free port" status and favorable tradewinds made St. Thomas a major point of transshipment between the Americas, Europe and Africa. As diverse as the itineraries of these great ships was the variety of the peoples and cultures settled in the Danish West Indies. As a boy, Camille spoke French at home, English, and Spanish with the Negro population of the island.
His parents sent him to Paris at age 12 to a small boarding school. It was there that the director, seeing his interest in art, advised him to take "advantage of his life in the tropics by drawing coconut trees." When he returned to St. Thomas in 1847, this advice had been taken to heart:
He devoted all his spare time to making sketches, not only of coconut trees and other exotic plants, but also of the daily life surrounding him. Time and again he drew the donkeys and their carts on the sunny roads, the Negro women doing their wash on the beaches or carrying jugs, baskets, or bundles on their heads. In these studies done from life he revealed himself to be a simple and sincere observer.
Whenever his father sent him to the port to supervise arrivals, the young man took his sketchbook with him. While entering the boxes and crates that were being unloaded, he also made drawings of the animated life of the harbor with its sailboats gliding along the blue waters, coasting large, verdure-covered rocks capped by Danish citadels. For five years the budding artist thus struggled between his daily chores and the urge of his avocation. Since he could not obtain permission to devote himself to painting, he ran away one day, leaving a note for his parents. In the company of Fritz Melbye, a Danish painter from Copenhagen whom he had met while sketching in the port, he sailed to Venezuela. As he later said, he "bolted to Caracas in order to get clear of the bondage of bourgeois life."
Having gained this sudden independence at age 23, one can easily imagine the exhilaration felt as he eyed his new surroundings! A time to dream, to explore, grow. Under Melbye's direction he produced paintings and watercolors, and made countless drawings in pencil, ink and wash; many of these annotated in Spanish with the signature Pizzarro.
By 1852 his parents had become resigned to his ambition and pledged their support. He returned to St. Thomas, then left his Caribbean home for Paris to further his studies and ultimately pursue a career.
(pissarro.vi)
When he went (1855) to Paris to study painting, he was first attracted to the art of the Barbizon school and to the poetic realism of Camille Corot. Later, Pissarro discarded Corot's dark colors in favor of a more atmospheric treatment of landscape. With Edouard Manet and other avant-garde painters, Pissarro exhibited at the Salon des Refuses (1863), and his link with such impressionists as Claude Monet and Auguste Renoir grew closer in the 1860s.
(Philip Gould, Source: The Grolier Multimedia Encyclopedia, Release #9.01, ©1997 at discoverfrance.net)


View of l'Hermitage, Jallais Hills, Pontoise
Oil on canvas, c. 1867
Fondation Rau pour le Tiers-Monde, Zurich
From the Artchive


L'Hermitage
Oil on canvas, c. 1868
The Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum, New York
From the Artchive


At the outbreak of the Franco-Prussian war in 1870, Camille moved to England. With Monet he painted a series of landscapes around South-East London as well as studying English landscape painters in the museums. When he returned home to Louveciennes a year later, Camille discovered that all but 40 of the 1500 paintings he had left there - almost twenty years’ work – had been vandalised.
(pissarro.com)


Lordship Lane Station
Oil on canvas, 1871
Courtauld Institute Galleries, London
From the Artchive


The Road to Louveciennes
(at the Outskirts of the Forest)
Oil on canvas, 1871
Private collection
From the Artchive


In 1872 Camille settled in Pontoise where he remained for the next ten years, gathering a close circle of friends around him. Gauguin was among the many artists to visit him there and Cézanne, who lived nearby, came for long periods to work and learn. These were also the years of the Impressionist group exhibitions in which Camille played a major role, but which earned him much criticism for his art. While mainly interested in landscape, he introduced figures (generally peasants conducting their rural occupations) and animals into his work and these became the focal point of the composition. It was this unsentimental and unliterary approach, and the complete absence of any pretence, that seemed to stop his work from finding appreciation with the general public.
(pissarro.com)


Le verger (The Orchard)
Oil on linen, 1872
National Gallery of Art, Washington
From the Artchive


Les chataigniers a Osny (The Chestnut Trees at Osny)
Oil on canvas, c. 1873
Private collection, New Jersey
From the Artchive


Gelee blanche (Hoarfrost)
Oil on canvas, 1873
Musee d'Orsay, Paris
From the Artchive


After encountering the work of the English painters J. M. W. Turner and John Constable while in London (1870-71), Pissarro lightened his palette and formulated a technique of applying strokes of bright color to the canvas to create luminous effects. These experiments did not meet with public or official approval, and Pissarro helped organize the first independent impressionist show of 1874. Pissarro never abandoned an underlying sense of solid form and contour. In such works as Peasant Woman with a Wheelbarrow (1874; Nationalmuseum, Stockholm), freely applied touches of broken color and the play of light transform ordinary settings with an atmosphere that softens and brightens forms without dissolving them.
(Philip Gould , Source: The Grolier Multimedia Encyclopedia, Release #9.01, ©1997 at discoverfrance.net)


Un etang a Montfoucault (Mayenne)
Pond at Montfoucault (Mayenne)
Oil on canvas, 1874
Private collection
From the Artchive


Autumn, Path through the Woods
Oil on canvas, 1876
Private collection
From the Artchive


Garden of Les Mathurins at Pontoise
Oil on canvas, 1876
The Nelson-Atkins Museum of Art, Kansas City
From the Artchive


La moisson (The Harvest at Montfoucault)
Oil on canvas, 1876
Musee d'Orsay, Paris
From the Artchive


Path through the Woods in Summer
Oil on canvas, 1877
Musee d'Orsay, Paris
From the Artchive


The Rainbow
Oil on canvas, 1877
Rijksmuseum Kroeller-Mueller, Otterlo
From the Artchive


Red Roofs
Oil on canvas, 1877
Musee d'Orsay, Paris
From the Artchive


Edge of the Woods or Undergrowth in Summer
Oil on canvas, 1879
The Cleveland Museum of Art
From the Artchive


The Woodcutter
Oil on canvas, 1879
Robert Holmes a Court Collection
Perth, Western Australia
From the Artchive


Le Valhermeil, near Pontoise
Oil on canvas, 1880
Private collection
From the Artchive


La Mere Larcheveque
Oil on canvas, 1880
Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York
From the Artchive


Peasant Girl Drinking her Coffee
Oil on canvas, 1881
The Art Institute of Chicago
From the Artchive


Peasant Girl with a Straw Hat
Oil on canvas, 1881
National Gallery of Art, Washington
From the Artchive


Peasants Resting
Oil on canvas, 1881
The Toledo Museum of Art
From the Artchive


The Shepherdess (Young Peasant Girl with a Stick)
Oil on canvas, 1881
Musee d'Orsay, Paris
From the Artchive


Girl Washing Plates
Oil on canvas, c. 1882
Fitzwilliam Museum, Cambridge, England
From the Artchive


Pissarro had great influence on the impressionists and their followers, including the neoimpressionist Georges Seurat, whose pointillist technique the older painter emulated after 1886. In his later years Pissarro returned to an impressionistic rendering of landscapes and urban scenes, as in Boulevard Montmartre in Paris (1897; The Hermitage Museum, Saint Petersburg).
(Philip Gould , Source: The Grolier Multimedia Encyclopedia, Release #9.01, ©1997 at discoverfrance.net)


Apple-Picking
Gouache, red chalk, and pecil on paper, 1886
Ohara Museum of Art, Kurashiki, Japan
From the Artchive


Pear Trees in Bloom at Eragny, Morning
Oil on canvas, 1886
Isetan Museum, Tokyo
From the Artchive


View from my Window, Eragny
Oil on canvas, 1886-88
The Ashmolean Museum, Oxford
From the Artchive


Pissarro's first completely Impressionist period ( between 1870 and 1880), is characterized by a palette much lighter than his original one, by a small comma-shaped brushstroke; and by a shimmering golden or silvery light that bathes the soft colors of his landscapes. Not quite satisfied with his own work, Pissarro experimented with Seurat's Pointillism between 1886 and 1890 but abandoned this technique when he found his work becoming lifeless. Strengthened by this experimentation, from 1890 until his death, Pissarro produced perfectly drawn and composed paintings that were rich in color, solid in volume, and subtle in harmonies. The most classical and humanistic of the Impressionists, Pissarro was extremely important not only for his own quietly serene art but for stimulating Cezanne's search for solidity, for contributing to Gauguin's early training, and for his advice and counsel to the other younger members of the Impressionist group.
(3D-DALI)


Peasants Chatting in the Farmyard, Eragny
Oil on canvas, 1895-1902
Private collection
From the Artchive


Boulevard Montmartre: Morning, Grey Weather
Oil on canvas, 1897
National Gallery of Victoria, Melbourne, Australia
From the Artchive


Boulevard Montmartre: Night
(Le Boulevard Montmartre, effet de nuit)
Oil on canvas, 1897
National Gallery, London
From the Artchive


Boulevard Montmartre: Rainy Weather, Afternoon
(Le Boulevard Montmartre, temps de pluie, apres-midi)
Oil on canvas, 1897
Private collection
From the Artchive


Boulevard Montmartre: Afternoon, Sunshine
(Le Boulevard Montmartre, apres-midi, soleil)
Oil on canvas, 1897
The State Hermitage Museum, St Petersburg
From the Artchive


Avenue de l'Opera, Place du Theatre Francais: Misty Weather
Oil on canvas, 1898
Private collection, New York
From the Artchive


Avenue de l'Opera: Morning Sunshine
Oil on canvas, 1898
Private collection, PhiladelphiaFrom the Artchive
From the Artchive


In the last years of his life Camille divided his time between Paris, Rouen, Le Havre and his home in Eragny and painted many series of different aspects of those cities, with varying light and weather effects. Many of these paintings are considered amongst his best and make a fitting finale to his long and eventful career.
When Camille Pissarro died in the autumn of 1903 he had finally started to gain public recognition and today, of course, his work can be found in many of the most important museums and private collections throughout the world.
(pissarro.com)




1 comment:

Talma said...

Uau...lindo demais! Preciso voltar aqui, para aprender mais com você.
Abraços do Brasil!!