Tuesday, July 20, 2010

Annual Art Fix – The Städel Museum European Masters Exhibition


Yesterday, courtesy of a free ticket from Mercedes Benz, B and I ventured to the Victorian National Gallery to view the annual Winter Masterpieces Exhibition.

This year it features paintings and sculptures from the Städel Museum, a famous institution in Frankfurt Germany. It covered artists from the 19th Century to the 20th Century, ranging from the Romantic and Realist movements of the early 19th to the Surrealists of the 20th and all the other art movements in between – chiefly Impressionism, Post Impressionism, Symbolism, Expressionism, and Cubism.

An interesting collection it was too.

To follow are various paintings that caught my eye, scanned from the promotional brochure and the postcards I purchased as souvenirs.

Just before entering the exhibition there was this curious and whimsical structure set up for the entertainment of children called Das Puzel Haus. God knows what was inside, but it looked inviting even to this older person.


Miraculously there wasn’t a huge crowd moving through the exhibition at the time we were there, so you could get up close and intimate with the paintings, starting with the Romantic Movement, with lots of brooding landscapes like this spectacular volcano painting by Johan Christian Klausson Dahl. This was B’s favourite picture in the exhibition.
I.C.Dahl_Vesuv (Medium)
My favourites were later on, when proceeding from the moody landscapes, all of a sudden one came upon Le Déjeuner by Claude Monet - so refreshing to the eyes with its fresh clear colours and simple composition.
The Impressionists were well represented with wonderful paintings by its leading artists.

Monet again with the typical painting style associated with the Impressionists.
Renoir’s Apres Le Déjeuner - a charming informal outdoor scene.
Degas – I loved the composition of this painting with the orchestra in the foreground with the ballet dancers beyond.
Also represented were works by Van Gogh, Cezanne, Corot, Gauguin, Moreau, Redon and this one by Rousseau – The avenue in the park of Saint-Cloud.
Beyond the Impressionists and Post Impressionists we moved on to Expressionism, Symbolism and Surrealism.

“Max” appears to be a popular Christian name for German artists, no doubt drawn from Maximilian.

Max Beckmann was well represented with a room dedicated to his paintings. (a few are pictured below)

Self Portrait 1905

Double Portrait
Another Max Beckmann (title escapes me)
I also loved this painting by Symbolist painter
Max Klinger - Portrait of a Roman Lady on a rooftop in Rome. It’s both airy and solid with the relaxed woman surrounded by sky with Rome laid out below her.
I was delighted to find my favourite “Max” artist, Max Ernst, also represented by two paintings, one of them the beautifully strange Nature at Dawn.
Lastly, because it has big cats in it and is wonderfully dramatic, I was very taken with this
Paul Meyerheim painting called The Jealous Lioness.
Also on show in the exhibition, I was pleased to see a Picasso cubist portrait, a painting by Fernand Knopff, several by Paul Klee and Egon Schiele, to name a few of the many others.

Next year, so it is rumoured, the Melbourne Winter Exhibition will feature Klimt and Hundertwasser, so that’s certainly something to look forward to.


Unknown said...

Great thanks Annie.
The scanned images are excellent quality too.

Anne S said...

Actually Jill, Ii did cheat on a couple of the images, downloading them from the internet. The rest are scanned.

Ann ODyne said...

silly painter - lioness not jealous just wants fresh meat.

Love the Monet breakfast with baby - never seen before, so thanks.

Anne S said...

That Monet was simply wonderful in the original - a big painting i might add. A lot of the paintings at the exhibition were things that one had not seen before.