Tag: bridgeman art library
Degas’s transition to modern subject matter, evident in The Steeplechase, was a long and gradual one, not an overnight conversion. Before he left Italy, he had made drawings of street characters and paintings of fashionable horse-riders, but always on a small scale.
In Paris in the early 1860s, his pictures of French racing events broke new ground both for their decidedly contemporary subject matter and for their surprising viewpoints and bold colours, which preceded the canvases of similar scenes by his renowned contemporary Édouard Manet.
Jean Jacques Henner has been called the Titian of modern art, and in the sense of a grand devotion to color and a wonderful power in the painting of the nude figure he has a certain sympathy with the Italian master. But he is also a portrait painter and a painter of religious subjects of supreme force.
He is the son of a poor workingman, a carpenter, of Bernviller in Alsace, and tells with pride and reverence how his father worked far into the night and stinted himself even in the necessaries of life to make an artist of him. The old man was amply repaid when his son became famous and rich.
Henner studied drawing first under Charles Goutzwiller, at the seminary at Altkirch, and from there passed into the studio of the painter Gabriel Guerin in Strasburg. From Strasburg he went to Paris, where he had Drolling and Picot for masters, and in 1858 the old father had no longer the necessity to assist him.
In that year he won the Prix de Rome, and for four years was supported by the French Government while he continued his studies. “Sleep” was his Salon picture for 1880 and was the success of the year. He commenced to win his medals in 1863, and has now taken a full series; he has been an Officer of the Legion of Honor since 1878, in which year he took a first-class medal at the Universal Exposition.
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St. Sophia, an amazing architectural feat in Istanbul was built in 365 and is now a museum housing Byzantine art. Nearby is St Irene, one of Byzantium’s earliest churches built over the pagan temple of Aphrodite. Between St Sophia and the Blue Mosque is the ancient Hippodrome, built 203, an ancient racecourse overlooking the Sea of Marmara.
Close by the Museum of Mosaics shelters a part of the floor of Constantine’s Palace, built of beautiful mosaics. On the promontry formed by the Bosphorus and the Golden Horn is the site of Constantine’s sacred palace, the now famous Topkapi, with Turkish, Chinese and Japanese porcelains. The library holds priceless Arabic and Greek manuscripts; there are the magnificent gold and silver threaded robes of the sultan and the jewels in the Treasury defy all description.
Close to Topkapi are the Museum of Archeology and Museum of Oriental Antiquities. Descend into Yerebatan Sarayi, the Sunken Palace Cistern, ancient vaults upheld by 336 columns. The Suleymaniye and Kaariye Mosques must be seen. Close to the Erdine Gate, are remnants of Blackernae Palace. Accross the Galata Bridge, the white marble Baroque palace of Dolmabahce stands. Istanbul’s skyline is shaped by over 400 mosques. The biggest and best are grouped in the old city of Eminonu. The Blue Mosque, Sultan Ahmet, built in the 17th century is the only mosque in Turkey with six minarets.