With its collections of ancient, modern and contemporary art, the Musée de Grenoble offers you a chance to traverse the history of western painting from the 13th to the 20th centuries. Included are major masterpieces of classical Flemish, Dutch, Italian and Spanish painting; one of 20th century Europe’s richest collections; and all the great post-1945 contemporary art trends, right up to the most recent artworks of the 2000s.
GEORGIA O’KEEFFE and her photographer friends
7 Nov.2015 – 7 Feb. 2016
As the first solo show in France to be devoted to the American painter Georgia O’Keeffe, the exhibition scheduled this autumn at the musée de Grenoble is an outstanding event. Put on with the participation of the Georgia O’Keeffe Museum in Santa Fe (New Mexico, USA), and the backing of the French Regional American Museum Exchange [FRAME], it goes back over the career of an icon of American art, who is as famous in the United States as Jackson Pollock. From her earliest works in New York to when she settled in New Mexico in 1949, Georgia O’Keeffe was greatly influenced by modern photography. To encompass this factor, the exhibition will create a dialogue between her paintings and her photographer friends, forming a total selection of 90 works coming from fifteen prestigious international museums, as well as from major German, Spanish and French institutions.
In 1883, Claude Monet went to live in Giverny, a small village in the Val de Seine, now well known, and created a garden teeming with flowers whose colourful harmonies would inspire many of his paintings. Like an outdoor studio, no less, this garden was enlarged in 1893 with a new parcel. The stream called the Epte passing close by enabled Monet to build the famous water lily pond. With all the care of a horticulturalist, the painter lovingly cultivated his water garden, installing various varieties of aquatic plants, water lilies, reeds, and irises, thinking at great length about the right mixtures.
The artist focused more and more on this pond and the vegetation encircling it. He spent many long hours on its banks, at different times of the day, recording the endless variations of light on water.
The museum’s work is part of a series of four pictures, depicting the northeast bank of the pond. Here, there is no longer any room for the sky, and the motif invades everything. The background is filled with a curtain of weeping willows which closes off the space like a tapestry. Climbing roses brighten the left side of the canvas while trees are reflected in the transparent water. The curve of the bank encloses the pond and its water lilies. The interplay of reflections closely interweaves these two worlds of luxuriant vegetation. The picture’s surface, covered with long and vigorous strokes, is offered to the eye in a busy host of colours, organized at a distance, in essentially green and blue shades.
Pond at Giverny, 1917
© Musée de Grenoble