Category Archives: Paris

Paul Cézanne – Post Impressionist

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Paul Cézanne was a French artist whose combined use of color, abstraction and geometric precision provided a link between nineteenth century Impressionism and twentieth century Cubism.

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Born in Provence in 1839, the son of a wealthy banker, Cézanne studied law in Aix before moving to Paris in 1861 with his childhood friend, Emile Zola. While Zola was to become one of France’s most renowned writers, Cézanne was to become one of the country’s most feted painters.

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Paris in the nineteenth century was a center for artistic innovation, and it was there that Cézanne met the Impressionist Camille Pissarro, an artist who would guide Cézanne away from his initial dark palette and towards colors that reflected a brighter, more natural light.

Although Cézanne knew and mixed with the Impressionists in Paris, including Manet and Degas, he was not particularly sociable. His shyness, short temper and bouts of depression made it difficult for him to form friendships and influenced his early works. His Dark Period (1861-1870), which dates from this time, is characterized by a focus on figures and above all by a use of somber colors, especially black.

Following the outbreak of the Franco-Prussian war in 1870, Cézanne left the French capital with his mistress, Marie-Hortense Fiquet, moving eventually to Pontoise. Painting alongside Pissarro, Cézanne began creating more landscapes and switched to brighter colors to created works that would lead critics to refer this stage of his life as The Impressionist Period (1870-1878). Indeed, Cézanne’s works were shown in both the first and third Impressionist exhibitions, which took place in Paris in 1874 and 1877. In neither of those exhibitions did Cézanne receive warm reviews from the critics.

By the early 1880s Cézanne’s life had become more stable. The family, which now included a son also called Paul, moved back to Provence and in 1886, Cézanne married Hortense and inherited his father’s estate. Impressed by Mount St. Victoire near the house of Hortense’s brother, Cézanne was able to combine his Impressionist techniques with a subject containing the solidity and permanence which he felt Impressionist art lacked, and which would later be felt in Cubism. www.segmation.com

The Final Period (1890-1905) of Cézanne’s life was not a happy one. He had broken off relations with his lifelong friend, Zola, after the writer had based a character on Cézanne’s life, and diabetes affected his personality to the extent that his marriage became strained. Just as acclaim for his work grew, Cézanne himself became increasingly reclusive, repainting the subjects of his old works in different ways. His masterpiece, The Great Bathers, for example, with its geometric lines and focused composition clearly shows his progression from a painting of the same subject made more than thirty years before which focused solely on the figures themselves.

Cézanne died of pneumonia in 1906 leaving a large oeuvre that include, The Murder, The Bather and Rideau, Crichon et Compotier, which became the world’s most expensive still-life painting when it sold for $60.5m in 1999.

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Source:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Paul_C%C3%A9zanne

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A Branch of the Louvre Museum to be Built in Abu Dhabi

Plans for the building of a branch of the Louvre Museum are being carried out in Abu Dhabi. The Louvre branch will reportedly begin being built early in 2013. The “emirates tourism arm” is responsible for this project.

The Louvre project will do much to add to the rich culture of Abu Dhabi. The museum will be built beside prestigious housing developments and a golf course and will cost an estimated $27 billion to complete. Saadiyat Island will be home to the new branch of the Louvre.

A branch of New York’s Guggenheim museum as well as New York University will also be built on Saadiyat Island. This development of the island is being called “one of the largest cultural projects in the Middle East.” However, due to a reported exploitation of foreign workers, over a hundred artists have threatened to boycott the Guggenheim museum.

Sources:
Abu Dhabi to begin building Louvre early next year

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Easiest Art Heist in Paris

Is theft of over $124 million worth of art from the Musee d’Art Modern (Museum of Modern Art) in Paris part of a movie plot, chances are it wouldn’t have had any exciting action scenes. Art thieves managed to steal 5 priceless paintings while 3 security guards were on duty, completely oblivious to the art heist taking place. Despite the art thieves breaking a back window to enter the museum, the building’s alarm systems were not triggered.

In fact, the theft was not discovered until the museum opened the following day and someone noticed the five empty frames.

Usually when a painting is stolen, time is of the essence, so art thieves carefully slice the paintings out of the frame (which damages the priceless work of art). In this case, the thieves had enough time to actually dismantle the frames and manually remove the paintings. Police are now examining the empty frames for forensic evidence.

The five stolen paintings were modern art masterpieces by renowned artists Pablo Picasso, Henri Matisse, Amedeo Modigliani, Fernand Leger and Georges Braque.

Although the criminals knew what they were doing, they were aided by the fact that the museum’s alarm system had been broken for nearly two months – despite the museum’s security system having been upgraded at the cost of $19 million just four years earlier.

Luckily, stolen art is usually recovered, although it may take several years. Do you like to paint? Be an Artist in 2 minutes with Segmation SegPlay® PC (see more details here)

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