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The Golden Age of Russian Impressionism

Art Masterpieces



Portrait of Adele Bloch-Bauer by Gustav Klimt


It took Gustav Klimt three years to complete this painting. It measures 138 x 138 cm and is made of oil and gold on canvas. Klimt was a member of the Vienna Secession, a group of artists that broke away from the traditional way of painting and there is an elaborate and complex ornamentation as seen in the Jugendstil style. The picture was painted in Vienna and commissioned by Ferdinand Bloch-Bauer whom, at the time, was a wealthy industrialist who had made his fortune in the sugar industry, and sponsored the arts and favored and supported Gustav Klimt. Adele Bloch-Bauer became the only model who was painted twice by Klimt when he completed a second picture of her, Adele Bloch-Bauer II, in 1912.



Garçon à la Pipe by Pablo Picasso


Picasso was living at Le Bateau-Lavoir in Montmartre when he painted the picture. Some of the local people made a living in the entertainment industry, such as being clowns or acrobats and Picasso used many local people in his pictures, but little is known about the boy himself in this particular picture. What appears to be fact from comments made from a variety of sources is that the boy was a model in his teen years who hung around Picasso's studio and volunteered to pose for the oil work. Picasso's only said the following about the boy:
"local types, actors, ladies, gentlemen, delinquents... He stayed there, sometimes the whole day. He watched me work. He loved that."


Dora Maar with Cat by Pablo Picasso


Dora Maar au Chat presents the artist's more mysterious and challenging paintings of his mistress regally posed three-quarter length in a large wooden chair with a small black cat perched behind her in both an amusing and seemingly menacing attitude. The faceted planes of her body and richly layered surface of brushstrokes impart a monumental and sculptural quality to this portrait. The painting is also remarkable for its brilliance of color and complex and dense patterning of Dora Maar's dress. The powerful figure is set in a dramatic, yet simple setting composed of a dizzingly inclined plane of wooden floorboards and shallow interior space that is arranged in a manner reminiscent of Picasso’s earliest manipulations of time and space in the cubist manner.


Portrait of Dr. Gachet by Vincent van Gogh


The quote Van Gogh wrote to his brother in 1890 about the painting sums up the paintings quite intimately:
"I've done the portrait of M. Gachet with a melancholy expression, which might well seem like a grimace to those who see it... Sad but gentle, yet clear and intelligent, that is how many portraits ought to be done... There are modern heads that may be looked at for a long time, and that may perhaps be looked back on with longing a hundred years later."


Bal Au Moulin de la Galette by Pierre-Auguste Renoir


Bal du moulin de la Galette (sometimes known as Le moulin de la Galette) is an 1876 painting by French artist Pierre-Auguste Renoir. It's housed at the Musée d'Orsay in Paris and is one of Impressionism's most famous masterpieces. The painting depicts a typical Sunday afternoon at Moulin de la Galette in the district of Montmartre in Paris. In the late 19th century, working class Parisians would dress up and spend time there dancing, drinking, and eating galettes into the evening. Like most other works of Renoir's early maturity, Bal du moulin de la Galette is a typically Impressionist snapshot of real life. It shows a richness of form, a fluidity of brush stroke, and a flickering light.


Massacre of the Innocents by Peter Paul Rubens


This version is the first version painted by Rubens and dates from around 1611–12. In the eighteenth century, the painting was part of the Liechtenstein Collection in Vienna, Austria, along with another Rubens' masterpiece, Samson and Delilah. After having been miscatalogued by Vincenzio Fanti in 1767, it was attributed to one of Rubens' assistants, Jan van den Hoecke, after Rubens. There, however, it remained until it was sold to an Austrian family in 1920. It was subsequently loaned in 1923 to Stift Reichersberg, a monastery in northern Austria. In 2001, the painting was seen by George Gordon, an expert in Flemish and Dutch paintings at Sotheby's in London. He was persuaded that it was indeed a Rubens by its similar characteristics and style to the Samson and Delilah picture, painted at around the same time.


Portrait de l'Artiste sans Barbe by Vincent van Gogh


Portrait de l'artiste sans barbe was one of many self portraits by Dutch artists Vincent Van Gogh. Van Gogh created this painting in Saint-Rémy-de-Provence, France in September 1889. Before then, Van Gogh created much more other self portraits. This excellent painting was portrayed on a canvas sized 40 cm x 31 cm (16" x 13"). Portrait de l'artiste Sans Barbe was painted an oil painting work. Though Van Gogh created many self portraits, this was an uncommon one, for the artist portrayed himself without his beard, and in many other self portraits he has painted himself as a bearded man. The self portraits are also created in a series like his Sunflowers (much admired artworks). Van Gogh was a passionate artist who created many historic and the most expensive paintings even while living in an asylum. From 1886 to 1889, Van Gogh produced more than 12 self-portraits in different activities. He created three different self portraits from March to April 1887, in spring 1887, in autumn 1887, in early 1888, and another version in August 1888. In this way, many self portraits in different angles were created by Van Gogh. All the self portraits of the artist were executed in Saint-Remy showing the artist's head from the left, i.e. the side with ear not mutilated.


Rideau, Cruchon et Compotier by Paul Cézanne


This was painted about 1893 to 1894 by French artistIt and is considered the most expensive still life ever sold at an auction. Paul Cézanne was famous for drawing still lifes, especially those which expressing complex emotions while still being based upon reality. These type of paintings would eventually lead up to the creation of new art styles during the 20th century such as Picasso's cubism.


No. 5, 1948 by Jackson Pollock


By Jackson Pollock, an American painter known for his contributions to the abstract expressionist movement, the painting was done on an 8' x 4' sheet of fiberboard, with thick amounts of brown and yellow paint drizzled on top of it, forming a nest-like appearance. It was originally owned by Samuel Irving Newhouse and displayed at the Museum of Modern Art before being sold to David Geffen and then allegedly to David Martinez in 2006 (though the supposed sale of this painting to Martinez has been denied by his attorneys). Though it was denied, it is still spectulated that it was sold for a very high price and the sale would make the painting the most expensive ever sold, privately or at auction, exceeding the sale of Gustav Klimt's 1907 Portrait of Adele Bloch-Bauer I.

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