The Small Tramps by Fernand Pelez

The Small Tramps by Fernand Pelez

Painting
The French artist, of Spanish origin, Fernand Pelez (1843-1913) is little known. Another painter born in the 19th century one absolutely needs to re-discover; that’s why we advise to pay a visit to the Petit Palais in Paris. Influenced by the boldest realism, he devoted most of his works to tramps and under-privileged people (paying particular attention to children).  We find today that both academicism and Pelez’s neat technique are against those pathetic characters, that sordid environment but we need to point out that at no time did he commit himself to sentimentalism like other painters such as Bouguereau. Some of Pelez’s paintings are unforgettable like the one with a young flower-seller, who sleeps completely exhausted on a step. The picture of the ‘petit misère’ begging in a doorway is…
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Anna Bilinska

Anna Bilinska

Painting
She was quite young and showed clearly she was proficient into painting, but the Fate did not want the life of the Polish artist Anna Bilinska-Bohdanowicz (1854-1893) to last long enough for us to see any mature paintwork. She was lucky anyway, the environment, the family allowed an early calling so she travelled to Paris in 1882 to enroll in the well-known ‘Académie Julian’, the only renowned art academy in Paris which allowed the women to enroll.   Anna Bilinska is mainly known because of her portraits but I much prefer three self-portraits (made using oil paints, one of them still unfinished). She has depicted herself looking straight at the viewers, holding an artist’s palette, a set of paintbrushes,  no doubt proud of her craft.   Few things are as pleasant as…
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Rachel Ruysch

Rachel Ruysch

Painting
Flowers and Fruits were depicted long time ago for the first time, but in 17th and 18th centuries the still-life subgenus gained importance. Specialized painters arose throughout Europe, especially in the Netherlands. The floral still-life was particularly endorsed and considered as an aesthetic object, a symbol, to the point that it came to be codified in a treaty written by Gerard de Lairesse which was published in 1740. The treaty focusses not only on the composition, the perspective and the colour but also on the way the flowers are set according to the meaning of each species: a tulip refers to nobility, a rose to love and ephemerality. The flowers also appear in the so-called vanitas, still-life where the objects are chosen and set according to a moralizing purpose. The…
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