Saturday, June 20, 2009

Waterhouse in London

On June 23, The Royal Academy of Arts in London will present the largest retrospective ever assembled on the art of John William Waterhouse (1849-1917).

This exhibition includes 92 paintings and drawings, along with sketchbooks. The London exhibition will continue through September 13, after which it will continue at The Montreal Museum of Fine Arts in Canada from October 1, 2009 – 7 February 2010.
Royal Academy website, link.


Jason Peck said...

Wow, Thats something I would love to see.

Unknown said...

James...Yes !!!!Waterhouse!!!

Time to check for best airline rates to London.

clyde semler said...

Is that your faun peeking through the bulrushes? Na, there are no fauns in dreary dreamy old England, they prefer the warmer southern climes. Must be a lonely poet musing on rescuing fair Ophelia. Considering the reverence the English Pre-Raphaelites had for Gothic and early Renaissance painting, they just couldn't resist the temptation of escapist Romantic indulgences as scenes as this one prove. Art may purport to react against certain established conventions, but it's hard to escape being enamored of those same conventions all at the same time. Shadows of the past continue to haunt by repelling and charming us alike.

Michael Dooney said...

Great, one of my all time faves, and Montreal in October sounds great to me :)

kev ferrara said...

Jealous! I'm sure it will be a fantastic show. I can only hope they swing it stateside.

Clyde, it seems to me that great art is never purely escapism. We only think it is because it is so entertaining. And masterful work is never an indulgence. As Pyle said, art-making "renders service."

And beyond that, Art is timeless. Questions of when it was made, whether it is nostalgic or not, what conventions are upheld or not... Those are thoughts for history textbooks and academic discussions. What really matters is the human heart behind the work, the inner radiance. (This is just my opinion, of course.)


clyde semler said...

Kev, I was not intending to degrade this artist, don't misunderstand. I thoroughly enjoy Waterhouse and many other Pre-Raphaelite artists and poets. I am saying that in spite of the ascetic ideals of the PR's (disdain for the excesses of Romanticism in favor of a more austere aesthetic), oftentimes the results ended in very Romantic outcomes. It's the unavoidable pitfall of creation: that which we seek to change or purify may end up having just the bugaboos we intended to avoid. Nothing wrong in that. Call it what you will, maybe karma. I'm trying to explain artistic events, facts, in terms of history, aims, and outcomes. Can you explain for me the way the human heart works behind art? I am really very interested in knowing more of your ideas on that. I'd also like to hear more of what you refer to as "renders service", please expand a bit.


kev ferrara said...

Hi Clyde...

I really don't see why Waterhouse is lumped in with the Pre-Raphaelites. I never understood the connection. He wasn't really a part of that group. Rossetti and Burne-Jones and all those guys.. they were formalist and mannered and were so obvious with their symbolism that their pictures are basically allegories... very dogmatic.

This seems much in contrast to Waterhouse's scenes, which while slightly formalist, are quite believable and beautifully un-mannered, as well as being highly Romantic. Because they are so believable, I think they escape from the realm of allegory.


Kendra Melton said...

Are those the only two known stops for the exhibition so far? Is there a website or anything featuring more information about the exhibit. Waterhouse is one of my absolute favorites and I would love the chance to see them up close. Looks like I'm going to have to start saving up for a plane ticket. :P

Eric Braddock said...

Words cannot describe how badly I wish I was anywhere near this exhibit to see it. I bet it's incredible.

frank gressie said...

it was in groningen first a couple of months ago, and its a real joy to see them in real life. sketchbooks, portraits in chalk, quick oil studies, unfinished works, and ofcourse the masterpieces!


Making A Mark said...

I'll be going to this exhibition when it opens at the RA and then reviewing it on my blog

I do like the way that these big exhibitions now go international so we know more about whether we should try and get to see an exhibition or not

Jean-Baptiste Monge said...


I was in london last week and I Searched the Préraphaélite painters and in particullary the art of
John William Waterhouse at the Tate Britain and at the National Gallery... And I didn't find them nowhere, now I know why GRRRRRRR ^^.

JB Monge