Wednesday, March 10, 2010

Here's a moody work I love for its bold brushstrokes and big blocks of color. There seems to be motion, everywhere, don't you think? In the slashes of the sky the foreground, those solid shapes of houses that lean like people in a moving crowd. The artist seems to have made good use of those dangerous thalo blues and greens. They have such strong tinting power they can really run away with your painting if you're not careful.

This is Paysage by Maurice de Vlaminck, who evidently spent a good deal of time in the company of Derain and Matisse, working in the Fauvist style initially, and then later, after the influence of Cezanne came into play, moved away from the earlier use of strong color.

Apparently this extroverted, largely self-taught artist was greatly affected by his World War I experience. Afterward, he withdrew to the French countryside, kept to himself, and limited his palette to more somber colors. (Art, Dr. Robert Belton, p. 483.) What do you think of his work?


  1. The work does remind me of Cezanne, perhaps a bit darker.

    It is very vigorous with energy that spills and surges beyond the fences and categories placed around him -- Fauvist, etc. He was evey more "unclassifiable" in real life, pursuing many different passions: music, cycling (an accomplished competitive cyclist), writer, actor...

  2. I love it when he uses the muted palate on simple fare, such as this. And he hasn't skimped on the paint, which is another plus.

  3. Hadn't known he had so many other interests such as cycling. Interesting. Also like the storminess of the one you posted, Bill; espec. like the fact that you don't really even notice the figure at first glance.