Category Archives: pintura
French painter and sculptor, one of the outstanding figures of Impressionism.
Edgar Degas exhibited at seven out of the eight Impressionist exhibitions, but he stood somewhat aloof from the other members of the group and his work was Impressionist only in certain limited aspects.
Like the other Impressionists, Degas aimed to give the suggestion of spontaneous and unplanned scenes and a feeling of movement, and like them, he was influenced by photography (he often cut off figures in the manner of a snapshot) and by Japanese color prints (he imitated their use of unfamiliar viewpoints).
However, he had little interest in landscape (he did not paint out of doors) and therefore did not share the Impressionist concern for rendering the effects of changing light and atmosphere. The appearance of spontaneity and accidental effects in his work was an appearance only; in reality his pictures were carefully composed.
He said that ‘Even when working from nature, one has to compose’ and that ‘No art was ever less spontaneous than mine’.
Degas always worked much in pastel and when his sight began to fail in the 1880s his preference for this medium increased. He also began modeling in wax at this time, and during the 1890s — as his sight worsened — he devoted himself increasingly to sculpture, his favorite subjects being horses in action, women at their toilet, and nude dancers. These figures were cast in bronze after his death. For the last 20 years of his life Degas was virtually blind and led a reclusive life. He was a formidable personality and his complete devotion to his art made him seem cold and aloof (as far as is known, he never had any kind of romantic involvement).
His genius compelled universal respect among other artists. Degas drawings and sculptures continue to be exhibited around the world. However, Renoir ranked him above Rodin as a sculptor, and in 1883 Camille Pissarro wrote that he was ‘certainly the greatest artist of our epoch’.
He was the first of the Impressionist group to achieve recognition and his reputation as one of the giants of 19th-century art has endured undiminished. His influence on 20th-century art has been rich and varied-on artists whom he knew personally, such as Sickert, and on later admirers. He was a superlative draughtsman and his work has appealed greatly to other outstanding draughtsmen, such as Hockney and Picasso. His mastery of pastel has been an inspiration to Kitaj.
Chilvers, Osborne, and Farr, The Oxford Dictionary of Art, Oxford University Press, Oxford, New York, 1997. p. 154
Degas and the Nude
I. The book
Important links related to this post:
- Chaves- link to the official site of our municipality
link to a great blog (“Olhares sobre a cidade”), run by Fernando Ribeiro, daily updated, in which different themes are approached, from politics to poetry. Some posts are closely related to our town’s issues; others refer to universal questions and matters. (While visiting the blog you are tuned to a radio station. This is quite something!)
Besides that Fernando Ribeiro usually posts some of his photos, always quite good ones, whether from specific scheduled issues as for example about our villages surrounding, or from “instantaneous” events he finds relevant witnessing through his camera and sharing with people. His aim is mainly to make people aware of what’s happening around them, or simply to call their attention to something they hadn’t noticed / realized before.
Being an artist, more than a simple photographer, Fernando Ribeiro has “the eye”. The eye and the love for his art. That’s why his sensitivity guides him towards quite simple, rather “unseen” stuff for the eyes of ‘the common people’ where he finds beauty that he keeps in the eternal memory of a photo.
He shares those tiny, great, awesome things in this blog, as well. And we all are so very grateful, mainly because he’s one of our best ambassadors and all his work is done for free.
* See some of Fernando Ribeiro’s latest (posted) photos below.
The Enigma of Desire: My Mother, My Mother, My Mother, 1929
This great composition, among the first works of the Surrealist period, is one of the most important. Dalí painted The Enigma of Desire in Figueras just as he was finishing The Lugubrious Game.
“I did it at the same time as The Great Masturbator“, he relatess “immediately after summer. My aunt had a large dressmaking workroom and it was there that I did all these pictures. The Great Masturbator was taken from a chromo that I had which depicted a woman smelling a lily. Naturally the face is mixed with memories of Cadaqués, of summer, of the rocks of Cape Creus.” The Enigma of Desirewas the first work sold by the Goemans Gallery during Dalí’s first one-man exhibition there in 1929; the Viscount of Noailles bought it together with The Lugubrious Game. Just as he was painting this canvas, Dalí found a religious chromolithograph on which he wrote, “Sometimes I spit with pleasure on my mother’s portrait,” commenting that what he did then “had a quite pschoanalytical explanation, since one can perfectly well love one’s mother and still dream that one spits upon her, and even more, in many religions, expectoration is a sign of veneration; now go and try to make people understand that!”
In the baroque appendage that elongates the visage, we recognize the geological structures of the rocks of the region near Cape Creus eroded by the wind, mixed with the fantastic architecture of Antonio Gaudi, “that gothic Mediterranean,” whose work Dalí had seen as a child in Barcelona.
The second part of the title, My Mother, My Mother, My Mother, was inspired by one of Tristan Tzara’s poems, “The Great Lament of My Darkness,” which appeared in 1917. Dalí considers The Enigma of Desire to be one of his ten most important paintings. The little group on the left depicts Dalí himself embracing his father, with a fish, a grasshopper, a dagger, and a lion’s head.
|Quotations by Salvador Dalí
“The difference between false memories and true ones is the same as for jewels: it is always the false ones that look the most real, the most brilliant.”
“The world will admire me. Perhaps I’ll be despised and misunderstood, but I’ll be a great genius, I’m certain of it.”
“Everyone should eat hashish, but once.”
“Take me, I am the drug; take me, I am hallucinogenic.”
Nadir Afonso (1920, Chaves, Portugal) is a painter and one of the foremost geometric abstractionists.
Formally trained in architecture, which he practiced early in his career with Le Corbusier and Oscar Niemeyer, Nadir Afonso later studied painting in Paris and became one of the pioneers in Kinetic art, working alongside Victor Vasarely, Fernand Léger, Auguste Herbin, and André Bloc.
As a theorist of his own geometry-based aesthetics, published in several books, Nadir Afonso defends that art is purely objective and ruled by mathematical laws that treat art not as an act of imagination but as an act of observation, perception, and form manipulation.
Nadir Afonso achieved international recognition early on in his career and currently holds many of his works in museums around the world. At the age of 91 he’s still actively painting.