Monthly Archives: February 2017

Eye Candy for Today: Rembrandt etching of farm scene with a man sketching

Cottages and Farm Building with a Man Sketching, Rembrandt Harmenszoon van Rijn, etching
Cottages and Farm Building with a Man Sketching, Rembrandt Harmenszoon van Rijn

Etching, roughly 5 x 8 in. (13 x 21 cm); in the collection of the Morgan Library and Museum, which has both a zoomable and downloadable version of the image on their site.

Remarkable though they may be, Rembrandt’s etchings of Biblical scenes are somewhat formal and tightly composed. Sale of those etchings was an important part of Rembrandt’s stock in trade an an artist.

His etchings of landscapes, however, seem an extension of his apparent love of sketching on location; they carry much of the relaxed and confident charm of his landscape drawings.

In these etchings, like his reed pen landscape drawings, I get a sense of pleasure in the act of drawing — the fun of hatching in the dark tones, the joy of his needle scratching across the plate, searching out the gestural shapes of the tree and the animals, and the quiet satisfaction of spending time out sketching the countryside with another artist.

 
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Marie Egner

Marie Egner, Austrian painter, still life, florals, landsapes
Marie Egner was an Austrian painter active in the late 19th and early 20th centuries who focused largely on floral still life and landscapes that often incorporated floral subjects along with architectural elements and woodland scenes.

Egner was adept with both oil and watercolor, her approach in both mediums combining bold statements with passages of great delicacy.

 
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Konstantin Bogaevsky

Konstantin Bogaevsky, Symbolist landscapes
Generally classified as a Symbolist, Konstantin Fedorovich Bogaevsky was a Ukrainian painter active in the late 19th and early 20th centuries.

He studied at the Russian Imperial Academy of Arts, where his instructors included Arkhip Kuindzhi — a highly regarded Ukrainian landscape painter and a member of the Peredvizhniki who defended Bogaevsky from factions at the Academy who felt Bogaevsky’s work inappropriate and beneath their standards.

Bogaevsky gained acceptance in the larger world of Ukrainian and Russian arts, and he became a noted Symbolist painter.

Influenced by the Romantic French landscapes of Claude Lorraine and the stony, monumental backgrounds of Andrea Mantegna, Bogaevsky painted landscapes both of his native Crimea and of a fanciful dreamworld his friends called “Bogaevia”.

 
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Eye Candy for Today: Carlo Ferrario ink drawing

Ancient Structure Beside a Stream, Carlo Ferrario ink drawing
Ancient Structure Beside a Stream, Carlo Ferrario

Pen and black on on paper, roughly 6 x 9 inches (16 x 23 cm); in the collection of the Morgan Library and Museum, which offers both a zoomable and downloadable version on their site.

I love how free and gestural Ferrario’s lines and hatching are here, so seemingly quick and casual as to appear scribbled; but over a foundation of solid, confident draftsmanship.

Ferrario often did drawings for the designs of operatic stage sets. If this was not one of those, my guess is that it is still likely a capriccio, an imagined rather than observed scene.

See his design for a stage set, with rows of receding arches, in the middle of the images in this post about “Graphite Drawings from the Metropolitan Museum of Art“.

 
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Johan Krouthén

Johan Krouthen, Swedish painter, landscapes
As was discussed in the comments on my recent post about Thomas Fearnley, the Scandinavian countries seem to have produced a disproportionately high number of wonderful landscape painters.

Johan Krouthén was a Swedish painter active in the late 19th and early 20th centuries.

He studied at the Royal Swedish Academy of Arts in Stockholm at the same time as Anders Zorn, and quit at the same time in a rejection of the institution’s restrictive policies.

Krouthén traveled to Paris and was exposed to the Impressionist avant-guarde there, and became acquainted with other Scandinavian painters while painting for a time in the art colony at Skagen in Denmark.

His subjects over time included room interiors, portraits and figures, but it is his landscapes for which he is best known. They are direct, clear observations of landscape elements and the effects of light, often with hight chroma passages but without the overt broken color of Impressionism.

The good news is that there are a large number of images of Krouthén’s paintings available on line; though many of those are unfortunately of less than desired quality. Those that are well reproduced, however, are worth searching out amid the others.

The largest selection I’ve found is on The Athenaeum, with over 400 images available. The largest reproductions are on the Bukowski’s auction site.

There is a dedicated site for Krouthén, www.johan-krouthen.se, maintained by Hans Nilsson, a professor of History at Linkoping University. The site is in Swedish, but it’s easy enough to navigate. The third navigation link, “Malningar”, translates as “Paintings” and there are sub-sections for time periods.

I’ve listed other resources below.

 
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Eye Candy for Today: Juan de Espinosa still life

Still Life with Grapes, Apples and Plums, Juan de Espinosa
Still Life with Grapes, Apples and Plums, Juan de Espinosa

In the collection of the Museo del Prado, which offers a downloadable as well as zoomable version of the image. There is also a somewhat larger downloadable version of the image on Wikimedia Commons, but I think the color on the museum’s image is likely more true.

A beautifully sensitive still life by a 17th century Spanish master. I love the contrasting colors of the different varieties of grapes, particularly the light colored ones in the foreground that seem almost luminous.

I have to wonder, though, if that is their true intended color, or if they may have originally have been differently tinted by a glaze with a fugitive pigment. The museum’s page doesn’t comment on it, but I’ve never seen grapes of that color. Maybe they have them in Spain.

 
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