Peter Paul Rubens by Maria Varshavskaya; Xenia YegorovaUniversally celebrated for his rosy and concupiscent nudes, Peter Paul Rubens (1577-1640) was an artist whose first concern was sensuality in all its forms. This Baroque master devoted himself to a lifelong celebration of the joys and wonders of the physical realm. He felt that the human body was as lovely and natural as the many natural landscapes he painted as a young man. In a lushly illustrated text, María Varshavskaya and Xenia Yegorova explore the master at work, bringing a unique focus to Ruben’s life and work
Publication Date: 2014
Rubens by Marie-Anne Lescourret; Elfreda Powell (Translator)When Peter Paul Rubens died in 1640 he left an indestructible reputation as one of the world's great painters. His prolific output included some 1,300 paintings (compare this with Leonardo's 20 and Vermeer's 36) as well as books of engravings, architectural drawings, and sketches. He also left a beautiful young wife, a vast personal fortune, a palatial house in Antwerp, and collections of old masters, antiquities, and precious stones. Largely forgotten now is Rubens's reputation as an accomplished diplomat who played no small part in ending the Thirty Years' War and was knighted by both Spain and England. Marie-Anne Lescourret has captured Rubens's enormous life in a vivid portrait which encompasses the turbulent history of his times. Without neglecting his paintings, she gives the reader a fascinating picture of war-torn Europe, court intrigue, and the interchanges between the painters, scientists, diplomats, churchmen, and political leaders of the age. Rubens is a painter whom everyone acknowledges as great but few people have understood. This illuminating, rounded biography offers an unmatched perspective on the man and his work. With 8 pages of illustrations.
Claude Lorrain by Sergei DanielClaude Gellée, called Claude Lorrain was neither a great man nor a lofty spirit like Poussin. His genius cannot, however, be denied and he was, like Poussin, a profoundly original inventor within the limitations of a classical ideal. He too spent most of his life in Rome though the art he created was not specifically Italian, but French. For more than two centuries afterwards everyone in France who felt called upon to depict the beauties of nature would think of Lorrain and study his works, whether it be Joseph Vernet in the eighteenth century or Corot in the nineteenth. Outside France it was the same; Lorrain was nowhere more admired than in England. There is an element of mystery in the vocation of this humble and almost illiterate peasant whose knowledge of French and Italian was equally poor, and who used to inscribe on his drawings notes in a strange broken Franco-Italian. This mystery is in some way symbolic of that with which he imbued his pictures, le mystère dans la lumière. This admirable landscapist drew from within himself the greatest number of extraordinary pictures, in which all is beauty, poetry and truth. He sometimes made from nature drawings so beautiful that several have been attributed to Poussin, but in his paintings his imagination dominates, growing in magnitude as he realised his genius. He understood by listening to Poussin and watching him paint that a sort of intellectual background would be an invaluable addition to his own imagination, visions, dreams and reveries.