Friday, March 26, 2010

The Friday Evening Nudes

You're So Vain



Guido Romano
Venus at her Mirror
Frederick Carl Frieseke 

Joan Miró

Christoffer Wilhelm Eckersberg




  1. Frederick Carl Frieseke -
    how marvelous.

    Christoffer Wilhelm Eckersberg -
    masterpiece of curves.

    thanks for sharing these.

  2. This is a clever and interesting theme.

    The confections in this group, it seems to me, are the Frieseke and the Bonnard. Both of them painted canvases of the most amazing and unique colors - playing the entire surface the way later modern artists would in abstract compositions. It's a figure, and it's about the figure, and it transcends the figure to become this entirely different thing - a gorgeous, delicious two dimensional creation of its own. And they both understood and used yellow in ways that amaze me.

    There is a rather famous, large Frieseke in the museum here in Raleigh of women under a brilliantly painted parasol in intense sun. The colors used on the faces of the ladies are unlike anything I've seen anywhere. And the paint is applied in such juicy, fruitluscious daubs and masses that it looks like something you could eat. A painting from unbelievable cake icings. But from a distance it perfectly captures the light and shade of the setting. A moment - an impression. He was one of the American Impressionist group which I think was called The Ten.

    As I've said about a previous Friday Evening set, I think the woman in tonight's Frieseke painting is particularly beautiful for her full, satiny, warm figure, and her intense red hair. I love the glimpse of her face in the mirror - like a Renoir figure. And like a Renoir, the colors and composition here accentuate what Renoir said was one of the most beautiful things on earth - the nipple.

    There is a kind of casual candor and comfort in a woman before her mirror - alone and unguarded, yet held as if before an audience, seeing how lovely she can look, imagining things we can't see. It adds another dimension to the paintings - a double entendre to the notion of "posing."

  3. This post makes me feel lovely-

    Aloha from Hawaii my Friend!

    Comfort Spiral

  4. Beautiful, all beautiful, you women, in your variety of forms and styles. The artists' eyes are so much truer than mine, and through them I see you as you are.

    Thanks for being so interested in beauty - you enrich us all by your passion.

  5. Thanks to everyone for their comments. This was a fun post to put together.

    Steve, in particular, I thank you for your beautifully written, insightful comments about the art. I wish I could use words that way to describe the art! Frieske is one of my favorites. Bonnard, as well. I saw an extensive exhibition of his work on my first visit ever to MoMA - early 90's sometime. I was hooked. Back then, I had many fewer artists on my list of favorites but he went on it immediately. I learned that he used mirrors and glass in the studio to paint from sketches.

  6. P.S. After responding to Steve's comment, I went back over the nudes and realize now how somewhat out of place the Picasso is because there is someone else holding a mirror for the model. Still, I rather like it. You know, I do like Picasso a lot but I can't think of a painting of his that I truly love. I like his sculpture best - there is such fun in some of them.

  7. geez- you know you're old when bellini paints your portrait ;) i am a bit chunky you see- which reminds me- i have to go use my total gym soon :)


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