Monday, August 30, 2010

Impressionists Exhibit

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On Saturday I went with my wife and some friends to the newest exhibit of Impressionist artwork on display at the San Francisco De Young museum. Needless to day, it was a great treat to see all of these spectacular paintings up-close-and-personal without having to make the journey to France to see them. We saw masters such as Pissarro, Sisley, Manet, Degas, Cezanne, and, of course, Monet. The museum had so much great art on display from so many artists that I’d need an entire page just to list them all.

Some of my favorites definitely included Monet’s work. I’ve been a big fan since I visited his home in Giverny about five years ago. In addition, however, I was pleasantly surprised by artists such as Sisley and even Pissarro who I had previously not known much about. What really intrigues me about the Impressionist artists is their break from the traditional, pre-photographic era paintings that sought to simply duplicate reality or provide an idealized form of mythological beasts or holy angels. The focus on everyday life and the feelings and intuitions that go into it are hallmarks of Impressionist art. 

Ironically enough, the term “Impressionist” originated with an art critic at the time who meant the word disparagingly when describing this new form of painting. Not losing a beat, the new artists took up the name with defiance, labeling themselves gladly with a term that was originally mean to be derogatory. There are so many wondrous facets of art to enjoy and imbibe, and it would take me hours to merely go into the basics of it. So, I suggest you go check it out for yourself, either at the De Young Museum or if you are further afield, checkout what art is nearest to you. Whether in Paris, France or Paris, Texas there’s plenty of good art out there to go around.