Gardens of Eden at Christie’s

by Joelle

 

Gardens of Eden at Christie’sGardens of Eden at Christie’sGardens of Eden at Christie’sGardens of Eden at Christie’s

 

The Impressionist and Modern Art Evening Sale  opened 20th Century Week at Christie’s New York with standout masterworks. Property from groupings such as The Collection of Elizabeth Stafford, The Sam Rose and Julie Walters Collection, The Collection of A. Jerrold Perenchio, and more, combined to present captivating artworks from the genre.

Never before I have seen such a large amount of rare art works together in one sale! (Totaled a number of $239.4 M $279.2m with fees). Among the spectacular illustrated moments of Impressionism to Modern art celebrating the use of light, the investigation of colors, materials, textures and media,  I have picked a few of my choice depicting peaceful garden sceneries.  They reflect the artists soothing relationships with nature , family and serenity and a perfect escape from today’s gray,  rainy day in our hectic Manhattan. I am also suggesting to fill you apartments  with almost natural  topiary trees from our e- shop and the Deruta of Italy ‘s beautifully hand painted “ Giardino” dinnerware collection Thank you Christie’s for such inspiration!

Coin de jardin avec papillons – Vincent Van Gogh’s (1887)

More high profile was the failure of Vincent Van Gogh’s Coin de jardin avec papillons (1887) put for sale by a London based collector became the most expensive work of Van Gogh’s Paris period to be offered at auction.

The scene is probably from the Voyer d’Argenson park in the Parisian suburb of Asnières, near the Seine, where Van Gogh loved to work. What really brings the picture to life are six butterflies (five wood whites and a solitary red peacock) hovering among the foliage.

Le bassin aux nymphéas – Claude Monet

Monet was an avid gardener, and much of his time at Giverny was spent in his sizeable garden. Peonies and red geraniums jostled for attention with pansies and yellow roses. His most famous horticultural feat, though, was creating a water garden, complete with a lily-covered pond, which, over the decades, he’d paint around 250 times. In this particular painting, he unified the scene’s elements by adopting a diaphanous veil of color all over, laid down with a light, transparent touch.

Baigneuse Assise – Pierre-Auguste Renoir (1841-1919) Painted in 1890

When Renoir painted this idyllic scene of a rosy-cheeked bather seated beside a woodland stream, he was in the midst of a vital period of artistic reassessment and renewal. In 1887, he had exhibited Les grandes baigneuses, a veritable manifesto of the hard-edged, Ingres-inspired manner that he had painstakingly cultivated since the middle of the decade. Renoir here employed an exquisitely soft, painterly touch throughout, fusing the body of the young bather with the lush vegetation that surrounds her. Viewed in profile, seemingly unaware of the viewer, she embodies Renoir’s ideal of woman as a natural being, in harmony with the earthly paradise of her setting.

Jeune Fille dans les jardin de Giverny – Claude Monet (1840-1926)  Painted in 1888

The scene is Monet’s evocation of late summer in his gardens at Giverny. Germaine, the fifteen-year-old daughter of Alice Hoschedé, walks up the grande allée, the wide path leading from the main entrance to the house; She is delivering two batches of flowers, freshly cut in the garden, to the house, to be arranged in bouquets to adorn the rooms, and perhaps even for the artist to paint. When living previously at Argenteuil and Vétheuil, Monet had installed a garden on those grounds that were available to him. Just as he needed the local landscape for his painting, he also required this kind of domestically cultivated site close at hand, not least for the visual joy it provided, but also for the study of color in nature in its purest form, and as convenient subject material for still-life painting.

 Mere et enfants dans un paysage – Henri Lebasque (1865-1937) Painted circa 1901
Lebasque began his career as a painter in the mid-1880s executing borders for Pierre Puvis de Chauvannes’ large murals and coloring religious statuary in the Saint-Sulpice quarter. The three figures in this quiet, domestic scene are most likely his wife, Catherine–called Ella –and their two daughters, Marthe and Hélène (also known as Nono).  Lebasque’s painting, refers to the close domestic subject matter in such a manner as to convey the personal nature of his response to the thing painted, and the universal familiarity of home and family. There is a sense of calm infused in Lebasque’s paintings which celebrate the fullness and richness of life. In his placid scenes of gardens and beaches, terraces and dinner tables, Lebasque portrays his family in particular, but in such a way that he appeals to a larger sense of family gathering and devotion” (Lebasque, exh. cat., Montgomery Gallery, San Francisco, 1986, p. 12).
Paysage et Figures – Pierre-Auguste Renoir (1841-1919) Painted circa 1905
The present work belongs to a series of bold, experimental landscape paintings inspired by the countryside surrounding his newly built home at Les Collettes. Paysage et figures portrays the sunbathed vegetation of the French Mediterranean coast. In its immediacy and freedom of execution, the painting almost borders on abstraction: with a few strokes of paint and a carefully orchestrated balance of blues and greens with reds and oranges, Renoir managed to capture the vivid presence of a southern, idyllic landscape. Paysage et figures demonstrates Renoir’s informal outdoor scenes integrates  figures into their surroundings with his soft palette and feathery touches of paint, which heighten the mood of harmony and contented relaxation. In Renoir’s painting, “Figures and landscape become one—a pictorial celebration of the splendor of visual experience” M. Lucy and J. House, Renoir in the Barnes Foundation, New Haven, 2012, p. 227).

 

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