- I will be the first to admit, I don’t make it to downtown DC enough to view, marvel, and study the great works of art displayed in our Capitol…..FOR FREE! One of my New Year’s Resolution was to take greater advantage or the city’s art scene and, yes, it is the end of September and I have been to a museum 2 times in 2015. Not a great record. Aside from juggling kids schedules, I need friends to smack me in the head and mention and exhibition to me MULTIPLE times before I take notice and make a plan leave the suburbs and travel to the Museums.
For the past couple months I have heard buzz around the National Gallery of Art’s exhibition Gustave Caillebotte: The Painter’s Eye. This past Saturday I finally committed, with 2 weeks remaining until the exhibition closes, and experienced this amazing exhibit! For those of you who have not seen it (and are reasonably close to DC), you have two weeks…it is worth moving around your plans to go see it before it is gone on October 4th.
Walking into to the exhibit I knew very little about Caillebotte. He, like his Impressionist friends, was rejected by the Salon (the official exhibition of the Academy of Fine Arts in Paris) in 1875 and found a home painting and exhibiting his works with the likes of Edgar Degas and Auguste Renoir. Caillebotte’s paintings featured images of people and places he encountered in and around Paris, which during his time was undergoing a radical modernization. So, why is he the least known Impressionist painter? “Because of his secure finances — derived from his father’s successful textile business — he had no need to earn an income from his art. He therefore did not sell his pictures, and few entered public collections,” states to the NGA. His wealth also helped him become a huge collector of Impressionist artwork, which upon his death he bequeathed to the French state and its museums.
So, why go to the show when one can just google him? His work is breathtaking in person! I visited this exhibition with a friend and fellow artist and we had a great time admiring and diesecting his work. Caillbotte’s juxtaposition of warm and cool colors, the texture of his whites, and his interesting perspectives matched with some large canvas sizes made for a great learning and viewing experience for both of us.
Bottom line, you have until October 4th to go see it; however, don’t go this week (September 22 – 24)…the Pope is in town and Washingtonians have been warned to treat a trip into DC as if it is a blizzard.
For more information of Gustave Caillbotte, check out Arty.net page…