Wednesday, October 1, 2014

Manet, Cézanne, Van Gogh – Guests from Around the World

Key pieces from outstanding museums in the United States and Europe encounter the high-quality collection of late 19th-century, modern French art of Kunsthalle Mannheim, at the Kunsthalle Mannheim, September 26, 2014 - January 18, 2015.

“The Cardplayers” by Paul Cézanne (1892/95) flown in from London,

“The Dead Toreador” (probably 1864), a main work by Édouard Manet,  from Washington. 

A dialogue between masterpieces begins in the lavishly refurbished Jugendstil building. For the first time, the museum in Mannheim places the focus on its most valuable art treasures and enables the audience to view rare loans from around the world.

Claude Monet (1840–1926), Die Rue de la Bavolle in Honfleur, 1864 

Guest curator Dr. Marie-Amélie zu Salm-Salm juxtaposes the works in Mannheim with carefully selected, imposing counterparts from major European and American museums, thus highlighting important artistic innovations of this unique rise to modernism - like the treatment of colour and light, questions of composition, the choice of motifs, and the use of new painting techniques. Key works by Manet, Cézanne and Van Gogh, as well as paintings by Delacroix, Courbet, Corot, Pissarro, Sisley, Monet, and Renoir enter into a fascinating dialogue of styles and motifs. The focus on top class works of French painting allows visitors an intensive encounter with the individual work and its counterpart.

Édouard Manet’s “The Execution of Emperor Maximilian” 

Mirrored by the other, the key works of Mannheim can be newly perceived and taken to one’s heart.

A surprise waits for the visitor at the end of the tour: The view to 20th-century abstraction with pivotal works by Piet Mondrian, Ellsworth Kelly and Josef Albers, exemplarily reveal the impact of Impressionism on art and artists of the 20th century and their way of dealing with form and color.

One highlight is certainly the finale of the exhibition: 

Mondrian’s “Composition with Yellow and Blue”, 1932, from Switzerland, 

next to Cézanne’s “Smoker with Propped Arm” from Mannheim 

and his “The Card Players” (above) from London. This constellation visualizes Mondrian’s affinity to Cézanne’s approach of liberating colour from form.