Self-Portrait as a Painter

Vincent van Gogh (Dutch, 1853-1890) – Self-Portrait as a Painter, 1887-88 (Oil on canvas. Van Gogh Museum, Amsterdam) – Van Gogh depicts himself as an artist, with all the necessary equipment: palette, brushes, and a canvas on a wooden easel. Contrasting colors, such as the blue of the smock and the orange-red of the beard, are set right next to each other in order to strengthen their effect…

Vincent van Gogh - Self-Portrait as a Painter

House on the Gein

Piet Mondrian (Dutch, 1872-1944) – House on the Gein, 1900 (Watercolor and gouache on paper) – Is a good instance of Mondrian’s manner and ideas around 1900, when he was twenty-eight and had just started painting landscapes in the surroundings of Amsterdam… Typical of the early Mondrian is the loose brush stroke, giving the impression of a direct oil sketch of the subject in the open air. This picturesque touch is characteristic of most of Mondrian’s work during these years, not only the studies but also the finished paintings, it is probably one of his earliest accomplishments as a painter. A free flexible stroke was to remain a distinctive feature of his work down to his last pictures, his brushwork, mark of the experienced painter, always gave Mondrian’s canvases their special vividness… In this approach, in this conception of nature, young Mondrian shows his individuality and independence.

Piet Mondrian - House on the Gein

Portrait of Two Women

Diego Rivera (Mexican, 1886-1957) – Portrait of Two Women (wife Angelina Beloff and friend Dolores Bastian), 1914 (Oil on canvas. The Arkansas Arts Center, Little Rock, Arkansas) – In 1913, his first Cubist works were shown at the Salon, demonstrating a much brighter palette and bolder paintwork than that of his fellow Cubists. In 1914, the artist held his first solo exhibition, shortly before the outbreak of WW I. – In 1915, Rivera had his first exhibition in the United States, at the Modern Gallery in New York… With the war dragging on, he returned once more to Paris, where he became one of the leaders of the “Classicist” Cubist group, which included artists such as Juan Gris, Gino Severini and Jean Metzinger…

Diego Rivera - Portrait of Two Women

Claude Monet Painting on His Studio Boat

Édouard Manet (French, 1832-1883) – Claude Monet Painting on His Studio Boat, 1874 (Oil on canvas. New Pinakothek, Munich Germany) – Here Manet has captured Monet and his wife Camille in the boat which the painter used as a floating studio, rowing it up and down the Seine and stopping whenever he spotted a promising subject… Monet was often desperately poor, but could always rely on a loan from Manet – who was equally unpopular but less dependent on art for his income…

Édouard Manet - Claude Monet Painting on His Studio Boat