Art Sunday: Vincent Van Gogh – View of Arles, Flowering Orchards

View of Arles, Flowering Orchards is a painting by Vincent van Gogh, executed in spring 1889, one of several paintings he produced in his Flowering Orchards series while living in Arles.

It supplies a view across a canal and the poplars on its board towards the historical center of Arles, with the towers of Saint-Trophime and College St Charles to the left, contrasted by recent building of the Caserne Calvin, housing the Zouave Regiment, to the right.

Van Gogh was acquainted with several of the Zouave officers, painted one in native uniform, and his portrait of Lieutenant Milliet is known as The Lover.

Poplar trees still stand along the canal, today, but the orchards and the Caserne are gone.


Art Sunday

The Fox Hunt is an 1893 oil on canvas painting by Winslow Homer. It depicts a fox running in deep snow, menaced by hungry crows. His largest single work, it has been described as “Homer’s greatest Darwinian painting, arguably his greatest painting of any kind.”

The Fox Hunt was painted in Homer’s studio at Prouts Neck, Maine during the winter of 1893. The painting depicts a fox foraging for food, who is in turn being hunted by crows driven to predation by hunger. At left several sprigs of red berries breach the snow, and in the distance may be seen the coastline and ocean beneath a deep blue sky.


Art Sunday: Picasso – Woman With a Book

Among Picasso’s most celebrated likenesses of his lover Marie-Thérèse Walter, Woman with a Book balances sensuality and restraint, enclosing exuberant, thickly applied color in a network of sinuous black lines. The composition pays homage to the Neoclassical master of line, Jean-Auguste-Dominique Ingres, whose work Picasso had admired since his youth, and whose Portrait of Madame Moitessier the Spanish painter had first encountered in 1921. Resting his model’s head on her hand, and replacing Madame Moitessier’s fan with the fluttering pages of a book, Picasso tapped into the eroticism latent beneath Ingres’s image of bourgeois respectability. The serene profile reflected in a mirror at right in Picasso’s portrait likewise references its Neoclassical precedent but may also constitute an abstract self-portrait.


Art Sunday

The Weeping Woman is an oil on canvas painting by Pablo Picasso, which he created in France in 1937. The painting depicts Dora Maar, Picasso’s mistress and muse. The Weeping Woman was created at the end of a series of paintings that Picasso produced in response to the bombing of Guernica in the Spanish Civil War and is closely associated with the iconography in his painting Guernica. Picasso was intrigued with the subject of the weeping woman, and revisited the theme numerous times that year. This painting, created on 26 October 1937, was the most elaborate of the series. It has been housed in the collection of the Tate Modern in London since 1987.


Art Sunday: Stanislas Lépine – La moisson aux environs de Caen

Stanislas Victor Edouard Lépine (October 3, 1835 – September 28, 1892) was a French painter who specialized in landscapes, especially views of the Seine.  

Lépine was born in Caen. An important influence in his artistic formation was Corot, whom he met in Normandy in 1859, becoming his student the following year.

Lépine’s favorite subject was the Seine, which he was to paint in all its aspects for the rest of his life. He participated in the first Impressionist exhibition, held at Nadar’s in 1874, although he is generally not considered an Impressionist. His paintings are placid in mood and are usually small in scale. Lépine was awarded the First Prize medal at the Exposition of 1889. He died suddenly in Paris in 1892.