Wednesday, February 28, 2018

Artists in the Studio – 17th and 18th Centuries

attributed to François Duquesnoy
Young artist modeling statuette of Dancing Faun
ca. 1620-43
British Museum

Willem Buytewech
Interior of artist's studio (Title-page design)
ca. 1620-22
British Museum

Artist in studio drawing model on dais
British Museum

from Under Ben Bulben

Quattrocento put in paint,
On backgrounds for a God or Saint,
Gardens where a soul's at ease;
Where everything that meets the eye
Flowers and grass and cloudless sky
Resemble forms that are, or seem
When sleepers wake and yet still dream,
And when it's vanished still declare,
With only bed and bedstead there,
That Heavens had opened.

                                        Gyres run on;
When that greater dream had gone
Calvert and Wilson, Blake and Claude
Prepared a rest for the people of God,
Palmer's phrase, but after that
Confusion fell upon our thought.

– William Butler Yeats (1939)

attributed to Willem Drost
Artist's worktable
ca. 1650-55
British Museum

Cornelis Galle after Peter Paul Rubens
Pictura (Allegory of Painting)
before 1650
British Museum

David Teniers the Younger
Monkey masquerade - Painter's studio
British Museum

Cornelis Dusart
The old painter
ca. 1675-1704
British Museum

Henri Bonnart (publisher)
Gallant Peintre
ca. 1678-1700
etching, engraving
British Museum

Bernard Lens
Putto painting at an easel
ca. 1680-1700
British Museum

Baroque Epigram

Ant upon ant write the text in
     The ground and the grass only of waiting
          And of the gap of gold sing silently and
               Illustrate ennui with their antennae

And they cross out noon as in the tit-tat-toe
     Time plays with itself and it is soon
          That the absence of sound and of no-sound speaks
               And love in its veiled pure minute grows old

The sunlight wearily lies down on naked
     Buttock and pap and that grass blades
          Prepare elaborately to celebrate neglect
               And whimsies of shade spell out the label flesh

Assumes for itself wrapped tightly in a niche
     Having only the one voice unique among kinds
          Unpeeling itself to show what an artist's intent
               Soft hand requires a lifetime to find

And what is vocally named in a brief
     Polysyllable: "induplicable"
          So from estrangement comes at arm's length
               (Nappy among naps) on a new bathsheet

Its song near weeds' weave unassailably yet
     Assailably moist till the checks and stripes
          Pressed still flatter shout out a triumph
               As on their local tricolor's great fête

And with the aid of earth (abetted by eternity
     And the muscular planets) buoy up a loller
          Supine on less than breath of what moves
               Concealing its own hot length in the atom

Its weight and rhythmic outline stretched in
     Mysterious hesitance and cosmic bottleneck
          To throw in my eyes suddenly like soothing acid
               Its clothed phrase and unclothed symphony

Washing them instantly of their waiting with pink
     Ablutions and drying them with cursive hairs' wit
          Till flush a the center as of bottomless space
               A blue-sky of shadow lifts out of pink

But a few inches off! absenting itself only
     To return at once in an enormous wink
          By shifting its accent and slowing unclosing
               Pale wings of an armpit's bruised butterfly

– Parker Tyler (1956)

Nicolaas Verkolje after Arnold Houbraken
Painter and naked model
ca. 1690-1715
British Museum

Anonymous French artist
Academy life-class with nude model on dais
ca. 1700-1800
British Museum

Jean-Michel Moreau le jeune after Pierre-Antoine Baudouin
Le Modèle honnête
etching, engraving
British Museum

Benoît-Louis Prévost after Charles Nicolas Cochin fils
The Study of Drawing (illustration for Diderot's Encylcopédie)
British Museum

William Dent
The Historical Painter
(Charles James Fox caricatured as Oliver Cromwell painting the execution of Charles I)

British Museum

William Henry Pyne
A Sculptor's Studio
ca. 1790
British Museum