Thursday, December 31, 2009

John William Waterhouse - The Shrine

The Shrine (detail)

Wishing you much joy and happiness in the New Year!

Saturday, December 26, 2009

Montréal - Christmas trees and the wonderful Waterhouse exhibit

Beautiful Christmas trees can be found in the lobby and halls of the Michal and Renata Hornstein Pavilion - Montréal Museum of Fine Arts through 3 January 2010. (The 35 trees were decorated by local groups that reflect Quebec's cultural diversity.)

Below are photographs of signs for the John William Waterhouse exhibition - Garden of Enchantment - I found amongst the Christmas trees.

But, you need to cross the street and enter the Jean-Noël Desmarais Pavilion for a visit to the wonderful exhibit (showing through 7 February 2010).

If you look closely in through the windows at the far right of the photograph above, you can almost :) see part of a display of exhibition catalogues in the lobby at the entrance to the gift shop.

After going up to the third floor, these beautiful banners greet you at the entrance to the exhibit (the door to the left furthest away).

We aren't allowed to take photographs in the exhibiton galleries ... but, I found the two below that some brave souls had taken of Waterhouse's 1894 and 1888 versions of The Lady of Shalott.

This is the first time all of Waterhouse's paintings of The Lady of Shalott have been exhibited together. The first one shown above is the 1894 version and, of course, the other is his 1888 version. Also in this room of the exhibition, hung to the left of the 1894 painting, is Waterhouse's third version, "I am Half Sick of Shadows," said the Lady of Shalott (1915). To the right is a study for the 1894 version.
In the second photograph, you can see Tennyson's poem, The Lady of Shalott, has been displayed on the wall. Then at the lower left of the photo is a darker area which I believe is the large, round, black cushioned seat in the middle of the room.

"Waterhouse owned a copy of the collected works of Tennyson, the pages of which are covered in sketches for future illustrations. [his lovely book is on display as you enter The Lady of Shalott room] He painted three episodes from this poem: the Lady setting out for Camelot in her boat in 1888; the Lady as she turns to look at Lancelot through her window, 1894; and “I Am Half-Sick of Shadows” in which the Lady sits wistfully before her weaving loom in 1915." - Cheryl Van-Buskirk & Emily Rice

Seeing all of the paintings together was such a wonderful experience. I hope to share more about my trip to Montréal and the Musée des Beaux Arts in another posting.
If you haven't already read it, Matthew Innis has written a very interesting and informative piece about the exhibition: A Visit with Waterhouse: My trip to Montreal.

Photographs courtesy:
1. wallyg - taken August, 2009
2. proacguy1
3. & 4. Photos taken by Cathy
5. A.M. Kuchling - taken October, 2009 (the sign wasn't there when I visited in December)
6. cbransto
7. Photo taken by Cathy
8. Brave soul 1
9. Brave soul 2

Thursday, December 24, 2009

John William Waterhouse - Camellias

A favourite work by Waterhouse .... a beauty for all seasons. :)
All the best to you and yours!

Wishing you the very best of the Season !

Happy Holidays

Wishing you much joy and happiness!

Albert Chevalier Tayler (British, 1862-1925) - The Christmas Tree
Aileen Robertson Mackinnon (British, b. 1901) - Cairn
Viggo Johansen (Danish, 1851-1935) - Happy Christmas

Dante Gabriel Rossetti - The Adoration

from The Seed of David
The Adoration, 1858-64
Watercolour on paper
Information from the Tate Collection:

Sandro Botticelli (Italian, ca. 1445-1510)

The Virgin Adoring the Sleeping Christ Child, about 1490
National Galleries of Scotland

Exhibition - Städel Museum
Through 28 February 2010

Fra Filippo Lippi (Italian, 1406–1469)

1. Madonna delle Roccie
2. Maria mit dem Kinde

Wednesday, December 23, 2009

Rossetti and Melozzo Da Forli

I love looking at these together. Different ... but, oh the faces and the colours ... I can't help but wonder if the angel's face might have been an inspiration for Rossetti - or do they just seem quite similar?

Melozzo Da Forli, Angel playing the tambourine, circa 1480
Dante Gabriel Rossetti, Hanging the Mistletoe, 1860

Fragments of frescos painted by Melozzo Da Forli circa 1480

Vatican Museums, Pinacoteca, Room IV

List of works in Room IV

Photographs courtesy:
1. & 3. Kwong Yee Cheng
2. IRIS' Travelogue
4. Cuadero de viaje
5. WVJazzman

Melozzo Da Forli (Italian, ca. 1438-1494)

Angel Musicians:
Angel playing the lute
Angel playing the viola
Angel playing the tambourine
Fresco fragments circa 1480
"The painting[s] [are] by Melozzo da Forlì, an Italian Renaissance painter, the first who practised foreshortening with much success and one of the most outstanding fresco painters of the 15th century."
These are included in the 14 fragments that can be seen at the Vatican Museums, Pinacoteca, Room IV.
More information is found at this link.

Tuesday, December 22, 2009

Rossetti's - Hanging the Mistletoe

Dante Gabriel Rossetti
Hanging the Mistletoe
oil on panel
32.7 x 27 cm
date on image: Xmas 1860-61
(Rossetti Archive)

Winter Beauty

yes ... it's a heart :)

Photos courtesy vtpeacenik

Celebrating the Winter Solstice

1. Photo courtesy David Brizendine - Winter Solstice 2008
2. From the video collection of hawthyn - Ring out, ring solstice bells
3. Photo courtesy JMR71 - 'Calling the Dawn'

A lovely Solstice photo from Scotland courtesy northstar37

2008 Winter Solstice Lantern Festival in Vancouver, BC
Photos courtesy ItzaFineDay - 2nd link

Monday, December 21, 2009

Happy Winter Solstice!

As we await the return of the light.

Lovely words from Gorsedd Arberth

It is now the marker of time marks time
When light shifts in the dark
Upon itself and ebb turns back
To flow as the land lies stark

More wonderful posts shared at Gorsedd Arberth

Solstice sunset photo courtesy BarneyF

The Sacred Mistletoe

For they believe that whatever grows on these trees is sent from heaven, and is a sign that the tree has been chosen by the gods themselves. The mistletoe is very rarely to be met with; but when it is found, they gather it with solemn ceremony. This they do above all on the sixth day of the moon, from whence they date the beginnings of their months, of their years, and of their thirty years cycle, because by the sixth day the moon has plenty of vigour and has not run half its course.
After due preparations have been made for a sacrifice and a feast under the tree, they hail it as the universal healer and bring to the spot two white bulls, whose horns have never been bound before. A priest clad in a white robe climbs the tree and with a golden sickle cuts the mistletoe, which is caught in a white cloth.
... - from 'Naturalis Historia' (XVI, 95) by Pliny the Elder

When cut down at the Winter Solstice as the sun is reborn, this divine spark of the gods is drawn down to earth symbolizing the moment of conception, although the plant is prevented from actually touching the ground and its sacredness preserved by catching it in a white cloth.
The golden sickle used to cut the mistletoe represents both the sun and the moon - a union of male and female energies. The gold symbolizing the sun and the shape of the crescent blade resembling the quarter moon. ...
Pliny also tells of the sacrifice of two white bulls and, in common with the oak, the bull is sacred to Taranis. Whilst the bull (like his zodiacal counterpart Taurus) is an earth symbol, his horns reach skywards in the shape of a crescent moon, linking earth with the realm of the gods.
- Steve Tatler

1. Henri Paul Motte, Druids Cutting the Mistletoe on the Sixth Day of the Moon, circa 1890-1900 [more information from ArtMagick]
2. [information unknown]
3. E. A. Hornel and George Henry, The Druids Bringing in the Mistletoe, 1890

In the Artist's Footsteps

Image to the left is from the Kelvingrove Art Gallery and Museum

The Druids Bringing in the Mistletoe will be included in the Glasgow Boys exhibition to be shown 30 October 2010 until 23 January 2011 at the Royal Academy of Arts, London

Sunday, December 13, 2009

J. W. Waterhouse Exhibition - Garden of Enchantment

The Montreal Museum of Fine Arts
John William Waterhouse
Garden of Enchantment

The exhibition will be at The Montreal Museum of Fine Arts
through 7 February 2010.

This past summer it was at the Royal Academy of Arts, London. (look mid-way along right side of page for links)

The exhibition was first shown at the Groninger Museum, the Netherlands.

Lots of interesting information to explore
about Waterhouse and the exhibition!


TV advertisement from the Montreal Museum of Fine Arts.

Review from The Art Tribune

I'll be away for a few days ... hoping you have a wonderful week!

John William Waterhouse

The Enchanted Garden

A Tale from the Decameron

Lady Lever Art Gallery - The Enchanted Garden & A Tale from the Decameron

Transcript of Podcasts about A Tale from the Decameron and The Enchanted Garden from National Museums Liverpool.