On the edge of the Jardins du Ranelagh in the 16th arrondissement in Paris is nestled a wonderful ‘hôtel particulier’ that was owned by the Marmottan family. Jules the father and Paul the son collected art, Jules especially was keen to Napoleonic pieces. At his death he willed the pavillion and the collection along with an extensive library to the Académie des Beaux-Arts. It has become over the years, known for it’s Impressionism era interests. It houses a large collection of Monets, and is probably a more comfortable place to come admire them than the over-run-by-tourists-wait-in-line-forever Musée d’Orsay.
They moved the usual spot of the Monet canvases for the temporary exhibition at the Musée Marmottan Monet. I was able to take a few clandestine photos to give you a sneak peek (especially those of you who are « locationally » challenged). It’s a must in the cold Parisian winter weather (certainly with this years unusually unusual cold spell)… The paintings are full of warm, vibrant colors that warm you up from the outside chill; full of expression to melt your icy face. There’s a steady simplicity in the brush stroke, and the thick paint recalling their impressionistic for-fathers, have a way of making manifest the painting with more than just an image, they attest to the matter, the material of which that image is made. When you look up close you can see it. You can see the exacte touch of the painter’s hand, you can see his intention, you can see the strange colors that make up a skin tone, a water tone, a shadow. And when you step back a few paces, you see the harmony that it all creates. But, a picture is worth a thousand words, so I will cease my « baratin » (jabber).
(click images to enlarge)
1910, Jeune fille en jupe rouge, by Adolf Erbslöh
From left to right :
1906, Nu de jeune fille, by Kees Von Dongen
1907, Portrait de jeune fille, by Auguste Herbin