I've always found most of his paintings to be rather boring. He seems to get too caught up in details and subject matter. He could have livened his paintings up with more interesting line rythm and expressiveness. Ruben's is a good example of what I'm referring to.
I would have to emphatically agree with Beltash. There is so much to learn from Bouguereau, even if you don't like his subject matter. I will give you the benefit of the doubt and assume you had a lapse of reason.
Take a good look at range of his work and his mastery of color and value, especially with flesh tones.
Finding his subject boring is your prerogative, but the design, composition, color, brushwork, etc. cannot be called boring by anyone who is really looking at his work.
Beltash, you humorless twit. I have immense respect for the guy. I’ve seen many of his works in the flesh and it’s some of the finest quality oil painting ever created by man. And a waist of time, because his scenes are sappy and stupid, as I said before. Many other painters working in a classical style that were less skilled in the aplication of the paint made much more interesting paintings due to there composition, subject matter, wit, humor and drama. He's the untimate technician, but not very imaginative. That’s just my opinion. We’re all entitled to that, right? Even people like you.
Geesh. You'd think I badmouthed your mom. But I shouldn't be picking on you, you're probably 9.
Lack of humor had nothing to do with my reply, because there was no joke in your post. (Hey, if I missed it, please feel free to point it out with a direct quote.)
Your posts speak for them selves.
I called you on your lack of respect, which you still harbor.
You call a dead man's life's work a "waste of time" as if your preferences in creativity should some how degrade what the artist wanted to paint. Just because you don't like it doesn't mean it is a waste of time.
I'm 20 years of age. Cheep shot. If you really want to attempt a flame email me so the rest of the forum doesn't have to endure your stupidity.
Originally posted by sea minus what a waist of time and talent. he could paint the figure like hell (especially women), by he's so sappy and stupid. well, at least he's dead now. I prefer Gérôme.
now, that's nice.
Bouguereau made a conscious decision to paint for the buying public and in the style of the times; i.e. the late Victorian age, which tended toward "pretty" and romantic themes that were later called sappy. Sappy didn't exist in the Victorian age. It's a modern concept. However, time judges great art.
He was the most popular painter of the rich and famous during his career. Even the poetry of the period reflects this romantic style.
During the late 19th century Bouguereau was considered the greatest painter of his era. He was an academic and if you get close to his work, it is so precise and clean that one can barely see a brushstroke. The results of an education at the Ecole.
During the advent of the modernists, Bouguereau came under particular fire as did most of the Victorian painters. He was literally degraded. Art history books skipped the Victorians completely, jumping from artists like David to the impressionists. Therefore, a generation of future educators and artists were never exposed to Bouguereau or his contemporaries. His paintings were sold for pennies by museums that did not predict the return of an appreciation for realism; especially since art schools were ridding themselves of realist teachers through natural attrition and then forcibly, and replacing them with modernists who were not pragmatically trained. The techniques and methods were nearly lost – some were undoubtedly lost.
While Bouguereau’s more minor works have sold for about 600,000 plus recently, his major serious paintings have been reclaimed for millions of dollars and gobbled up by museums and collectors.
If you enter his name in Google and click on News, you'll see some interesting recent happenings regarding the sale of what has been considered one of his minor gypsy paintings by the Minneapolis Institute of Art.
Fred Ross, chairman of the Art Renewal Center owns ten Bouguereau paintings (all of which fall into this category or are studies). He encouraged a public outcry in response to the then pending sale of “The Bohemian” by the Minneapolis Institute of Art.
The MIA had actually not exhibited the work for ten years and before that, it had hung it in the ladies bathroom at the museum. However, it was a particularly popular print and could be purchased on cups and plates, calendars etc.
No artists, art students, art historians’ etc. had apparently had been allowed access to the painting in all this time.
The negative publicity surrounding the objections to the sale is believed to have affected the selling price. The predicted value was between $700K to $900K but it sold at Christie's for only about $635K about a week ago. It was sold to an American collector, identity still unknown.