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Posts tagged ‘Spain’

El Greco and the Painting Process

Saint Martin and the Beggar

El Greco (Domenikos Theotokopoulos) – “Saint Martin and the Beggar”, National Gallery of Art, Washington, DC (Photo)

This last Saturday, the National Gallery of Art, along with SPAIN art & culture, held a small symposium on the Renaissance/Mannerist artist Doménikos Theotokópoulos in honor of the 400th anniversary of this death.  Better known as El Greco (the Greek), this Cretan painter stands out in Spanish art history for his unique, almost otherworldly compositions, bold use of color and fluid brushwork.  Analysis of some recently rediscovered paintings was presented at the conference and helps shed some light on how the artist worked.

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Pablo Picasso: Creative Chameleon

The monthly ArtSmart Roundtable brings together some of the best art-focused travel blogs to post on a common theme.  This month we are discussing Contrast.  You can link to all the ArtSmart contributions below. For February we welcome a new team to the ArtSmart group – Lydian and Pal of Art Weekenders! They are based in Amsterdam and love sharing ideas for art and culture based getaways.  We’re so excited to welcome them to the Roundtable!

Pablo Picasso - "Portrait de Dora Maar"

Pablo Picasso – “Portrait de Dora Maar” 1937 (Photo: Musee Picasso Paris)

Contrast is a fundamental concept in art.  Artists use colors, movement, shapes and volume to add contrast and build emotion in their work.  But what happens when an individual internalizes the concept of contrast and applies it to his or her own career?  Pablo Picasso was an incredibly gifted artist but I have always been struck by how deliberate and thought-out his works were.  Wanting to explore new creative approaches, Picasso radically switched between several styles throughout his career, each one unique and captivating.  That to me is his genius and a real lesson in Contrast.

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ArtSmart Roundtable – Spanish Baroque

The monthly ArtSmart Roundtable brings together some of the best art-focused travel blogs to post on a common theme.  This month we are focusing on Artistic Periods or Movements.  Check our the other periods we’ve picked by looking at the all the ArtSmart posts below. This month we welcome a new writer to the ArtSmart team – Alexandra of ArtTrav! Alexandra is based in Florence, Italy and is an art historian turned blogger.  We are super excited to have her in the group!

I definitely have my favorite and not so favorite periods of art (I’m looking at you French Rococo).   I like drama without being intense.  I like skilled painting but a step back from photographic realism.  I definitely like good use of light and dark space on a canvas.  And so I love the Spanish Baroque.

Francisco Ribalta - "Christ Embracing St Bernard"

Francisco Ribalta – “Christ Embracing St Bernard”, 1625-27, Museo del Prado, Madrid

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Hieronymus Bosch: Morality and Monsters

The monthly ArtSmart Roundtable brings together some of the best art history-focused travel blogs with a post around a common theme.  This month we are discussing artists you should look for on your travels.  Below are links to all the group’s posts this month.

self-portrait of Hieronymus Bosch in "The Garden of Earthly Delights"

Hidden face believed to be a self-portrait of Hieronymus Bosch in “The Garden of Earthly Delights” (Museo del Prado, Madrid)

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ArtSmart Roundtable – Medieval Europe at the Cloisters, New York City

The monthly ArtSmart Roundtable brings together some of the best art history-focused travel blogs with a post on a common theme.  For March we are discussing Art Worth Traveling For.  You can find links below to all the group’s amazing destinations this month.  We also want to welcome the Roundtable’s newest member, Murissa from The Wanderfull Traveler!

I love medieval art and architecture.  In the back of my mind, I have the perfect medieval art itinerary planned: starting among the great Cathedrals of France, I move south through the Pyrenees into Spain and enjoy all the pilgrimage churches along the Camino de Santiago de Compostela.  Someday I’ll do all of this!  But in the meantime, for an infusion of Medieval art without leaving the US, I have to recommend a visit to the hauntingly beautiful Cloisters Museum in New York City.  Going far beyond the normal concept of a museum, the Cloisters recreates the atmosphere of a medieval monastery by literally transporting parts from Europe and reconstructing them in Northern Manhattan.

Saint-Michel-de-Cuxa, Cloisters, New York City

The Cloister from Saint-Michel-de-Cuxa, (ca. 1130–40) as can be viewed at the Cloisters Museum in New York City. This structure is Catalan in style but is from present day France. (Photo: The Cloisters Collection)

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