Friday, April 15, 2016

"Party Crasher"

10 x 10"
oil on panel

The span of days you didn't hear from me recently was largely due to my working on this new painting.  It tires me to drag out a piece for days - I suffer from a short span of attention, paint for a few hours and seek out other things to do around the house.  I truly love starting a painting in the morning and finishing in the evening.  

But Renoir's masterpiece Luncheon of the Boating Party is complex - you have a landscape, still life and fifteen figures and a dog all in one.  Sixteen figures including the my viewer.  

The famed painting is in the Phillips Collection, one of the off-the-mall museums in Washington DC - and a must-go-to place.  Especially to soak in Renoir's painting.

The Boating Party is a very interesting anatomy of Renoir's friends -

- the woman on the bottom left, holding a dog, is Aline, who married Renoir and together they had three sons.

- the man on the bottom left wearing the boater's hat is Gustave Caillebotte, an accomplished artist who painted Paris Street, Rainy Day - a crowd favorite which hangs in the Art Institute of Chicago.  Gustave was also an avid boatman.

- in the threesome in the upper right corner is the actress Jeanne Samary with two of Renoir's closest friends flirting with her.

- the man with the boating hat in the upper left and the woman in the boating hat leaning on the rail are brother and sister and children of the proprietor of the restaurant Maison Fournaise, where the scene takes place.

- the remainder are poets and critics and a wealthy art historian, collector and editor of the Gazette des Beaux-Arts.

Clearly the in-crowd.

Please click here for a larger view.

No comments: