Do not miss the two following exhibitions in Paris until July 23, 2018!
March 29-July 23, 2018
Musée du Louvre
Eugène Delacroix was one of the giants of French painting, but his last full retrospective exhibition in Paris dates back to 1963, the centenary year of his death. In collaboration with the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York, the Louvre is holding a historic exhibition featuring some 180 works—mostly paintings—as a tribute to his entire career. From the young artist’s big hits at the Salons of the 1820s to his final, lesser-known, and mysterious religious paintings and landscapes, the exhibition will showcase the tension that characterizes the art of Delacroix, who strove for individuality while aspiring to follow in the footsteps of the Flemish and Venetian masters of the 16th and 17th centuries. It will aim to answer the questions raised by Delacroix’s long, prolific, and multifaceted career while introducing visitors to an engaging character: a virtuoso writer, painter, and illustrator who was curious, critical, and cultivated, infatuated with fame and devoted to his work. The exhibition will bring together masterpieces by Delacroix from museums in France (Lille, Bordeaux, Nancy, Montpellier, etc.) and exceptional international loans, particularly from the United States, Great Britain, Germany, Canada, Belgium, and Hungary.
Much remains to be learnt about Delacroix’s career. It spanned a little over forty years, from 1821 to 1863, but most of his best known paintings were produced during the first decade. The output from the next three quarters of his career is difficult to define, as it cannot be confined to a single artistic movement. Although Delacroix is often hailed as a forerunner of modern colorists, his career does not always fit a formalist interpretation of 19th-century art.
The exhibition is organized in three sections, presenting the three major periods in Delacroix’s long career and highlighting the motivations that may have inspired and guided his painting. The first section — focusing on the conquest and triumph of the first decade — studies the artist’s break with neoclassicism and his renewed interest in the expressive and narrative possibilities of paint. The second part explores the ways in which his large public murals (his main activity from 1835 to 1855) impacted on his easel painting, with its visible tension between the monumental and the decorative. Finally, the third section shows how his later years were seemingly dominated by a keen interest in landscape painting, tempered by an attempt to extract the essence from his visual memories.
These keys to interpretation allow for a new classification that goes beyond a mere grouping by genre and transcends the classical–Romantic divide, indicating instead that Delacroix’s painting resonated with the great artistic movements of his day: Romanticism of course, but also Realism, eclecticism, and various forms of Historicism.
Exhibition curators: Sébastien Allard, Director of the Department of Paintings, Musée du Louvre; Côme Fabre, Department of Paintings, Musée du Louvre; Asher Miller, Department of European Paintings, The Metropolitan Museum of Art.
Grappling with the Modern:
From Delacroix to the Present Day
April 11–July 23, 2018
In parallel to the retrospective exhibition at the Louvre, the Musée Delacroix is holding an exhibition on the murals painted by Delacroix for the Chapelle des Saints-Anges in the church of Saint-Sulpice (which has recently undergone conservation work). They include Jacob Wrestling with the Angel, a magnificent monumental painting that is often regarded as the artist’s spiritual testament; commissioned in 1849, it was not completed until 1861. Delacroix set up his last studio (now the Musée Delacroix) on Rue de Fürstenberg, near Saint-Sulpice, in order to finish these superb decorative works that are of such significance to the museum. Moreover, the analysis and conservation work have shed new light on these three chapel paintings by Delacroix. The exhibition will be an opportunity to bring together works by Delacroix and by the many 19th- and 20th-century artists he inspired, including Gauguin, Epstein, Redon, and Chagall.
Source: Louvre’s press release dated March 29th 2018