Monday, March 7, 2011

Exhibit: Illusions of Reality

An old man struggles to carry a heavy load of wood as his daughter (or granddaughter?) stops to pick flowers. It’s a simple and universal human story, painted with extraordinary sympathy and attention to natural detail.

This painting by Jules Bastien-Lepage is part of an exhibition at the Ateneum museum in Finland. The show includes paintings, photography, and cinema of the Naturalist movement.

The curator of the exhibition is Gabriel Weisberg, an expert on naturalism, and on the early uses of photographic references by 19th century painters.

“Illusions of Reality - Naturalist Painting, Photography and Cinema, 1875-1918” at the Ateneum Museum in Helsinki, through 15 May, 2011. According to blog reader Christoph, there’s a nice catalog, too.
Thanks, Christoph Heuer
Ateneum museum
Bastien-Lepage on Wikipedia
More on current exhibitions of realist paintings at the excellent blog Underpaintings.


Scott Radtke said...

This painting generally resides at the Milwaukee Art Museum, because of which I had the good fortune to view it on a near-daily basis (I used to work there). If you can't make it to The Netherlands, I'm guessing you could wait a bit until it returns to the States.

David Still said...

Yes, I've read about this exhibition a while ago, and I'm definitely planning to go down to Helsinki to see it soon.

Johan said...

I'm reading the book.
It's much more than just a catalog of the works at the show, which runned at the Van Gogh Museum in Amsterdan in January. It explains in depth how 19th century painters were influenced by photography and film, and what their thoughts were about these "new" media.
It's a must have for anyone who enjoys naturalistic work.

I only wish I had known about it when the show was still running in Amsterdam(can't make it to Finland ARGH!)

Jussi Tarvainen said...

Went there on saturday and drooled over the paintings. They are huge and rich. Very very powerful!

Mario said...

Beautiful painting, unfortunately Finland is a bit far.
It's interesting to notice how naturalism was often coupled to simbolism those days.

bill said...

Big smile when I saw this posted. I can't tell you how many students I took so see this when I was teaching in Milwaukee. I know this goes without saying but I'll say it anyway. To see this in person is magic. It's alive. The colors, the values, surface. I really believe this painting to be a masterpiece. The fact that the Milwaukee Art Museum looks like an alien space station does nothing to take away from its nice collection. said...

I saw the exhibition at the Van Gogh museum in Amsterdam. It's beautifull.