Sunday, March 4, 2018

Artist's Models (Animate and Inanimate)

workshop of Philips Galle
Christ with Cross atop Golgotha posing for ten painters
engraving (book illustration)
British Museum

from Zone

It is Christ who better than airmen wings his flight
Holding the record of the world for height

Pupil Christ of the eye
Twentieth pupil of the centuries it is no novice
And changed into a bird this century soars like Jesus
The devils in the deeps look up and say they see a
Nimitation of Simon Magus in Judea
Craft by name by nature craft they cry
About the pretty flyer the angels fly
Enoch Elijah Apollonius of Tyana hover
With Icarus round the first airworthy ever

– Guillaume Apollinaire (1913), translated by Samuel Beckett (1950)

Artist drawing from a cast by candle light
ca. 1641
British Museum

Giuseppe Maria Mitelli after Pietro de' Rossi
Accademici Scontornati 
(group of grotesques drawing a hunchbacked model)
British Museum

Frederik Bloemaert after Abraham Bloemaert
Artist and his Models
(drawing in the studio from casts of sculptures)
ca. 1679-1702
engraving and chiaroscuro woodcut
British Museum

Benoît Louis Prévost after Charles Nicolas Cochin fils
The Study of Drawing 
(artists and students drawing from models and casts by lamplight)
etching, engraving (book illustration for the Encylcopédie)
British Museum

Philippe Joseph Tassaert
Drawing Academy
(students drawing by lamplight from a reduced copy of the Borghese Gladiator)
British Museum

William Pether after Joseph Wright of Derby
Art Academy
(students drawing a cast of a statue of Venus by lamplight)
British Museum

J.J. Grandville
Drawing School 
(monkey-artists drawing and painting monkey-headed model)
hand-colored lithograph
British Museum

Scarcely Disfigured

Farewell sadness
Greeting sadness
Thou art inscribed in the lines of the ceiling
Thou art inscribed in the eyes that I love
Thou art not altogether want
For the poorest lips denounce thee
Greeting sadness
Love of the bodies that are lovable
Mightiness of love that lovable
Starts up as a bodiless beast
Head of hope defeated
Sadness countenance of beauty

– Paul Eluard (1932), translated by Samuel Beckett (1932)

Muirhead Bone
A Nude Man
British Museum

Jean-Louis Forain
Le repos du modèle (première planche)
British Museum

Jean-Louis Forain
Le repos du modèle (quatrième planche)
British Museum

Anders Zorn
(standing before a painting of herself on an easel in the studio)
etching, aquatint, drypoint
British Museum

Terry Frost
Female Model
color monotype
British Museum

Avigdor Arikha
The Model and her Painter
British Museum

what would I do without this world faceless incurious
where to be lasts but an instant where every instant
spills in the void the ignorance of having been
without this wave where in the end
body and shadow together are engulfed
what would I do without this silence where the murmurs die
the paintings the frenzies towards succour towards love
without this sky that soars
above its ballast dust

– Samuel Beckett (1948, translated from his own French text)

All excerpts are from Collected Poems in English and French by Samuel Beckett (New York: Grove Press, 1977)