Posts Tagged ‘ Landscape ’

‘An Estuary Scene’, de Jan Van Goyen

Jan van Goyen [13 Janeiro 1596 – 27 Abril 1656] – “An Estuary Scene” , 1652-54


Enquanto o céu parece prestes a desabar sobre nós, cá em baixo há uma estranha calmaria. Sinais dos tempos…

‘Seaport with the Embarkation of the Queen of Sheba’, by Claude Lorrain

From Claude Lorrain [1604/5 – 23 November 1682], French painter of the Baroque period, ‘Seaport with the Embarkation of the Queen of Sheba’, 1648


Two paintings by Claude, Seaport with the Embarkation of the Queen of Sheba and Landscape with the Marriage of Isaac and Rebecca, are known as the ‘Bouillon Claudes’ because they were made for Frédéric-Maurice, Duc de Bouillon (1605–1652), a French general in the papal army in Rome. They were completed in 1648 and remained in the Bouillon family throughout the eighteenth century. They even escaped seizure during the French Revolution, despite Bouillon’s successor being imprisoned in 1794 and his property confiscated.

Although documents survive to tell us these paintings were commissioned as a pair, the scenes belong to different biblical stories. They are, however, harmonious in the subjects they depict. Each explores the relationship between men and women, whether during a wedding celebration or because of a journey that brings friendship. There is a contrast between the bustling urban seaport and the peaceful countryside. The central activity of each painting is framed by either buildings or trees, with the sea or a substantial river in the background. Via The National Gallery.

‘The Etretat Cliffs after the Storm’, by Gustave Courbet

From Gustave Courbet, born 200 years ago on June 10, 1819 – The Etretat Cliffs after the Storm, 1870

Etretat had attracted painters since the early nineteenth century, drawn by the clarity of the air and the quality of the light. In summer 1869, Courbet arrived in his turn in this small Norman town. He stayed in a house by the sea, tucked against the cliff on the left of the bay (Falaise d’Aval) which he painted many times over. His most accomplished version is certainly The Etretat Cliffs after the Storm.

Gustave Courbet – The Etretat Cliffs after the Storm, 1870
Musée d’Orsay, Paris

In this pure landscape, swept clean of people and all anecdotal detail, Courbet brilliantly balances land and rock, sky and sea. He has made each natural element almost palpable. The clarity of the air and the limpid light after the rain are magnificently caught. The critic Castagnary, a friend of Courbet’s and a firm believer in realism, spoke of “the free, joyous air which circulates in the canvas and envelops the details.” We suddenly understand the admiration that the future Impressionists felt for Courbet’s light and freedom.

Courbet sent The Etretat Cliffs after the Storm and The Stormy Sea to the Salon of 1870. The two canvases, painted about the same time, set up a dialogue as if they were describing successive phases of the same phenomenon. The praise they drew at the Salon consolidated Courbet’s reputation and made him one of the leading figures in the art scene of his time. Via.

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