Italian Early Renaissance Painter, 1445-1510
Italian painter and draughtsman. In his lifetime he was one of the most esteemed painters in Italy, enjoying the patronage of the leading families of Florence, in particular the Medici and their banking clients. He was summoned to take part in the decoration of the Sistine Chapel in Rome, was highly commended by diplomatic agents to Ludovico Sforza in Milan and Isabella d Este in Mantua and also received enthusiastic praise from the famous mathematician Luca Pacioli and the humanist poet Ugolino Verino. By the time of his death, however, Botticelli s reputation was already waning. He was overshadowed first by the advent of what Vasari called the maniera devota, a new style by Perugino, Francesco Francia and the young Raphael, whose new and humanly affective sentiment, infused atmospheric effects and sweet colourism took Italy by storm; he was then eclipsed with the establishment immediately afterwards of the High Renaissance style, which Vasari called the modern manner, in the paintings of Michelangelo and the mature works of Raphael in the Vatican. From that time his name virtually disappeared until the reassessment of his reputation that gathered momentum in the 1890s Related Paintings of Sandro Botticelli :. | Novella di Nastagio degli Onesti (mk36) | Trials of Moses (mk36) | Minerva and the Kentaur | Venus and Mars | Cosimo Rosselli and Assistants,Moses receiving the Tablets of the Law and Worship of the Golden Calf |
devonshire collection, chatsworthDennis Miller Bunker
Dennis Miller Bunker Gallery
The paintings of Bunker's early maturity in New York (ca. 1880-82) were often marine subjects, featuring a series of beached boats, painted on Long Island. In these he followed the standard academic practice of first painting loose, preparatory sketches (Beached, ca. 1881-2) prior to more conventionally finished exhibition pieces. The early portraits (Portrait of Walter Griffin, 1881, Portland Museum of Art) also evidence rigorous craftsmanship.
While studying in Paris, Bunker's summer excursions to the countryside resulted in another series, this time of scenes of Larmor, a town in Brittany. The focus of these compositions, be it church spire (Brittany Town Morning, Larmor, 1884, Terra Foundation for American Art), cemetery cross, or a lone tree (Tree, 1884-5, private collection), was invariably that of a richly painted, dark graphic shape against a bright sky. Nevertheless, the pictures are characterized by soft atmospheric effects and tonal subtlety. No less subtle are the landscapes Bunker painted after returning to America; paintings done in South Woodstock, Connecticut (Pines Beyond the Fence, 1886, private collection) still favor dramatic value contrasts, with subjects carefully painted against a light sky, but the palette has grown lighter, the color more saturated.
By 1887 Bunker completed his Portrait of Anne Page, a painting requiring much labor, but one of his most poignant works. In its restrained use of color, delicate modeling of form, and aesthetic elegance it is reminiscent of the works of Thayer and James McNeill Whistler. There soon followed the Boston commissions, portraits mostly of male sitters--still somber in tone, they are painted in a more confident manner, suggesting the influence of Sargent (Portrait of George Augustus Gardner, 1888, Museum of Fine Arts, Boston).
Portrait Sketch of Eleanor Hardy Bunker, 1890. Private collection.That Bunker spent the summer of 1888 painting with Sargent is verified by personal correspondence, as well as through several pieces by the latter artist (Dennis Miller Bunker Painting at Calcot, 1888, Terra Foundation for American Art), but no paintings of the English sojourn by Bunker have survived; possibly he destroyed them in dissatisfaction. However, once back in Boston the experience came to fruition, for over the next two years Bunker produced a series of canvases which evidenced that he was one of the first American artists to fully understand and successfully practice impressionism. In the Greenhouse, ca. 1888, Chrysanthemums, 1888 (Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum), The Pool, Medfield, 1889 (Museum of Fine Arts, Boston), and Meadow Lands, 1890 (Museum of Fine Arts, Boston) all feature a rich palette, vertiginous compositions, and his unique "fish hook" shaped brush strokes.
At the same time, Bunker's last figure pieces remained faithful to his academic training. Jessica, 1890 (Museum of Fine Arts, Boston), The Mirror, 1890 (Terra Foundation for American Art), and Eleanor Hardy Bunker, 1890 (Metropolitan Museum of Art) are characterized by a restricted color range and heightened elegance.Jean Baptiste Greuze
Jean Baptiste Greuze Galleries
French painter and draughtsman. He was named an associate member of the Academie Royale de Peinture et de Sculpture, Paris, in 1755 on the strength of a group of paintings that included genre scenes, portraits and studies of expressive heads (t?tes d'expression). These remained the essential subjects of his art for the next 50 years, except for a brief, concentrated and unsuccessful experiment with history painting in the late 1760s, which was to affect his later genre painting deeply. Though his art has often been compared with that of Jean-Simeon Chardin in particular and interpreted within the context of NEO-CLASSICISM in general, it stands so strikingly apart from the currents of its time that Greuze's accomplishments are best described, as they often were by the artist's contemporaries, as unique. He was greatly admired by connoisseurs, critics and the general public throughout most of his life. His pictures were in the collections of such noted connoisseurs as Ange-Laurent de La Live de Jully, Claude-Henri Watelet and Etienne-Francois, Duc de Choiseul. For a long period he was in particular favour with the critic Denis Diderot, who wrote about him in the Salon reviews that he published in Melchior Grimm's privately circulated Correspondance litteraire. His reputation declined towards the end of his life and through the early part of the 19th century, to be revived after 1850, when 18th-century painting returned to favour, by such critics as Th?ophile Thore, Arsene Houssaye and, most notably, Edmond and Jules de Goncourt in their book L'Art du dix-huiti?me siecle. By the end of the century Greuze's work, especially his many variations on the Head of a Girl, fetched record prices, and his Broken Pitcher (Paris, Louvre) was one of the most popular paintings in the Louvre. The advent of modernism in the early decades of the 20th century totally obliterated Greuze's reputation. It was only in the 1970s, with Brookner's monograph, Munhall's first comprehensive exhibition of the artist's work, increased sale prices, important museum acquisitions and fresh analyses of his art by young historians, that Greuze began to regain the important place that he merits in the history of French art of the 18th century.