Monday, September 29, 2014

Impressionist Interiors

National Gallery of Ireland,  May 10 to August 10, 2008

The exhibition brought together over 45 wonderful paintings and drawings by Manet, Monet, Renoir, Morisot, Degas, Cassatt, Gauguin and Pissarro, on loan from public and private collections throughout Europe and the United States of America. It was the first serious survey of this particular dimension of Impressionism, and will show some of the many and varied ways in which Impressionists and artists within their circle engaged with interior spaces both public and private, domestic and social.
Impressionist Interiors featured twelve paintings and pastels by Edgar Degas, among them;

 'Portraits in a Cotton Office' (Museum of Fine Arts, Pau),

'The Convalescent' (J. Paul Getty Museum, Los Angeles);

'After the Bath' (Philadelphia Museum of Art) and

 'Café Concert at Les Ambassadeurs' (Museum of Fine Arts, Lyon).

There were also some fine examples by Paul Gauguin who often brought the outside world into his symbolist interiors by incorporating details such as floral arrangements or wallpapers decorated with birds and plants. He was represented in this show with

'The Painter's Home, rue Carcel' (National Museum, Oslo),

 'Nude Study/ Woman Sewing' (Ny Carlsberg Glyptotek, Copenhagen), and

'The Little Dreamer' (Odrupgaard, Copenhagen).
Édouard Manet, like Edgar Degas was essentially a painter of the modern interior. He said to Berthe Morisot: "you can do plein-air painting indoors, by painting white in the morning, lilac during the day and orange-toned in the evening". Manet's oil studies of

'A Bar at the Folies-Beregère' and

'The Ball at the Opéra' (Private Collection),

were included in this exhibition, as well as

 'Interior at Arcachon' (Sterling and Francine Clark Art Institute, Massachusetts).

The exhibition included a number of works by well-known women artists associated with Impressionism;

 Berthe Morisot, 'The Artist's Sister at a Window', (National Gallery of Art, Washington); and

'Eugène Manet on the Isle of Wight' (Musée Marmottan Monet, Paris) and

 Mary Cassatt, 'Lydia at a Tapestry Frame' (Collection of the Flint Institute of Arts, Flint, Michigan).

Also featured were

Camille Pissarro, 'Minette' (Wadsworth Atheneum Museum of Art);

Claude Monet, 'Interior, after Dinner' (National Gallery of Art, Washington)

as well works by Pierre Bonnard and

 Edouard Vuillard (After The Lunch).
Also featured were some lesser-known artists who engaged with interior views, among them; Zacharie Astruc, Henri Gervex, Frédéric Bazille and Federico Zandomeneghi.