I have now begun my senior year in college.
Yes, I just turned 48 on Saturday. #nevertoolate
My emphasis of study is art history which was why I was so thrilled to recently visit The Getty.
Here are a few of my favorites ladies.
“Portrait of the Marquise de Miramon, née, Thérèse Feuillant”, Jacques Joseph Tissot, c. 1866.
Tissot is one of my favorite French painters. He is a master of detail. Yet for all of the information available on this painting there is one key factor that puzzles me. The Marquise is shown wearing a fashionable dressing gown (robe) in the privacy of her own home, the Château de Paulhac, in Auvergne. So why the lone glove in such an intimate setting? (The other rests on the mantle.) And you thought Michael Jackson invented that fashion. Smile.
“Young Ladies Admiring Japanese Objects” James Tissot, c. 1869.
Tissot again. But this image spoke to my heart. Which should be the #1 reason for selecting art for your home.
In this painting I saw myself and my cousin Linda. We LOVE going to museums. Yet each and every time we somehow lean in too closely to study some small detail and inevitably cause alarms to go off.
The Chinoiserie detailing in the table above and the oriental rug below is just exquisite in person.
I like to study the signatures of famous artists. Tissot’s is by far one of the prettiest I’ve seen.
The main reason I love to go to art museums is the interactive factor. I can show you the painting of “Portrait of Thérése, countess Clary Aldringen” by John Singer Sargent c. 1896 but to really SEE the portrait it must be viewed in person. I did try to capture the paintings large size, by allowing a viewer into the shot for reference, but the true impact cannot be felt.
The real magic of this painting is found in the sparkling gems. You can somewhat get the idea in the photograph but in person it’s magnificent.
The frame itself was also fabulous and his signature reinforces his swift painting ability.
I almost quickly passed by “Entrance to Jardin Turc” Louis-Léopold Boilly, c. 1812.
At first glance it seemed rather “Meh.”
But then, initially, the children drew me in. The affection of the boy; is it towards his sister or her grapes?
I also had to laugh at the seemingly smiling dog with dentures.
But just beyond that I saw her.
And she saw me.
Over the summer I completed a class strictly on portraiture. One session alone was spent on Netherlandish artist Rogier van der Weyden. I was eager to see his work in person. At first “Isabella of Portugal” is off putting. The noble women of the 1450’s used to pluck their foreheads to achieve this hairstyle. She seems so…harsh… to our modern eye.
But on closer inspection you can almost “feel” the velvet. You can also see the creases of skin on her neck. Keeping in mind this portrait was painted around 1450 I then understood why van der Weyden is considered a master.
I like this painting because…we’ve all been there.
Sure, we could discuss “Head of a Woman”, Michael Sweerts, c. 1654, in terms of his striking brushwork and how the artist seemingly created a three dimensional form through separated and blended strokes of various shades. The application of white on white alone is nothing short of spectacular.
But sometimes it’s just better to say “I feel you sister.”
I just never tire of Renoir. While “La Promenade” , c. 1870, is far from his best work, it’s still lovely.
The ethereal white of her dress against the brown and green palette makes me sigh with contentment.
When in close proximately to darling young children (that I know well) I will often say “You are so cute I am going to put you in my pocket.”
If there was ANY way, shape, or form that I could have put “Jeanne Kéfer”, Fernand Khnopff, c. 1885, in my pocket I would have.
Just look at her!
Her pose captures the essence of childhood. The taupe coat against the pale green door is perfection.
In my pocket!
I have of course saved my best for last.
“Jeanne (Spring)”, Édouard Manet, c. 1881.
I’m going to let you in on a little secret. While everyone else LOVES Monet and Renoir I myself would choose Manet as my favorite impressionist. He was a risk taker. I like that.
For over two decades, Manet's paintings were rejected by the Salon or viewed with contention. Thankfully, this painting was met with true success just one year before his death.
I had to go back twice to take her all in.
1200 Getty Center Drive, Los Angeles, CA 90049
I hope you have enjoyed the tour.