Karel Appel – Art is a Feast

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Karel AppelThe Museum of Modern Art of Paris is presenting a retrospective on the work of Karel Appel from February 24th to August 20th 2017.

Karel Appel is one of the founding members of the CoBrA movement, but after that short period of collaboration with other artists he followedhis own path, experimenting with his art all his life.

To present this rich and diverse body of work, the Museum of Modern Art of Paris has defined 5 themes or eras.

The CoBrA period (1948-1951) – Largely drawing their inspiration from children’s drawings and primitive art, CoBrA artists promoted an art based on spontaneity and experiment,


Post CoBrA/Expressive vehemence (1952-1957) – After the dissolution of the CoBrA group , Appel  worked solo from Paris. There he caught the attention of a French art critic and art theoretician who was fascinated by the expressive vehemence of his painting and who introduced him to French and European art circles. He also introduced him to the New York gallery owner Marcha Jacson, an accounter that  subsequently lead to many stays in that city.


The Sixties and Seventies – In the early sixties, Appel was still using a gestural approach, but by the late sixties and during the following decade he abandoned his gestural style for new experimentations. His hand became less expressive, leading to painted reliefs with sharper contours and a more colorful reinterpretation of his vocabulary.


The circus – In 1978, Appel created an amazing set of seventeen sculptures on the theme of the circus putting on display fantastic animals, clowns and musicians.

The eighties, nineties and two Thousands – Appel underwent a pictorial renewal in the early eighties in the way of a stronger narrative gestural manner  that some link to neo-expressionism. At the end of the decade, he adopted again a new style that announced his final work. He put aside his characteristically vivid colors and painted stripped-down compositions in black and white. He experimented with the human figure and its relationship to space, whose emptiness evokes the anxiety of man in the universe. In the nineties and two thousands, Appel produced monumental installations inspired by the worlds of theatre and the carnival. In contrast with these baroque sculptural effusions, his painting from this period is reduced to stark representations on the human body.


I experienced the exhibition as an explosion of spontaneity and energy, showing the work of an artist free of conventions and with an incredible gestual power of expression. His use of colours is also amazing and re-inforces the vitality of this work.

Some have been disappointment at the limited number of art works on display that was lower than that of other exhibitions organized at the Museum. While I tend to agree with this opinion, I have to add that the intensity of the works presented was such that it stayed with me long after I had left the building. This to me is a sign of the genius of the artist and of the sucess of that particular exhibition.


Primitive Art at Saint Germain des Prés

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Primitive Art

Primitive Art

With increasing success Saint Germain des Prés in Paris has been hosting open fairs on Primitive Art since 2002. If you are in Paris in September (8-13.09.2015) don’t miss this opportunity to admire exceptional primitive art works while strolling along the old streets of Quartier des Arts at Saint Germain des Prés. This year about 50% of gallerists will be foreigners, coming from all over the world.

Primitive art works are indeed captivating in their own right. Renowned artists such as Emil Nolde, Henri Matisse, Modigliani or Picasso, just to mention a few, have been fascinated and influenced by primitivism. This impact on Western art continues to this day, and can be traced under different forms in paintings, sculptures, assemblages or body art.

The 2015 edition promises to be a wonderful artistic journey, details of which can be found in the press file (only in French unfortunately!).

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Naive art in Jutland

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Proudly pointing at Jacky Quétard's painting

Proudly pointing at Jacky Quétard’s painting on the banner of the exhibition

It was a real pleasure to attend for the first time the opening of the naive art exhibition that takes place every year in Jutland, Denmark.  The 2014 edition presented about 400 art works by naive artists, mostly from Denmark.

For my husband and I this was also a nice opportunity to leave Copenhagen for a couple of days to enjoy the amazing nature of the west coast, meet wonderful people and, of course, take pictures.

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Category: Events, Naive Art

Street art on Islands Brygge (DK)

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Street art - Islands Brygge

Street art – Islands Brygge

Tags and graffiti can be a plague deteriorating the urban environment. Fortunately, there are also instances where street art is a feast for the eyes adding colours, messages and sometimes humour to places otherwise not especially attractive.

I just love to suddenly discover new creations or to go back to older ones and see how time, the weather and often other “artists” have brought about alterations.

On my way back from Galleri Naïf on Islands Brygge (Copenhagen, DK) I was thrilled to discover a construction site surrounded by barriers covered with street art – all colourful and fresh. What a treat this was!

I am now sharing my pictures with you hoping that you will enjoy them.  Continue reading

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Category: Street art | Tags: , ,

Hundertwasser, more than an artist

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F. Hundertwasser

F. Hundertwasser

I loved Hundertwasser from the first moment I saw his paintings many years ago.  This year  I visited 2 exhibitions on his work and life, one in Paris and one in Denmark.

Hunderstwasser  was controversial during his life time (1928-2000), but his ideas and work are particularly relevant to some of the big contemporary debates. He was a pioneer embracing artistic creation, ecology and architecture as a hymn to nature, rejecting conformity and uniformity and advocating a life in harmony with nature.

The 2014 exhibitions – text, photos and videosContinue reading

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My photos on the retrospective on Fontana in Paris

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Lucio Fontana

Lucio Fontana

I was lucky to be in Paris at the time of the 2014 retrospective presented by the Museum of Modern Art of Paris on Lucio Fontana, one of the great visionaries of the 20th century in the field of art.

The retrospective skilfully introduced visitors to the world of this Italian artist born in Argentina who endeavoured to change our perception of space and challenged the very notions of modernity, style and taste.

I mostly knew Fontana for his famous lacerated or punctured canvases, but the 200 sculptures, paintings, ceramics and installations on display made me discover the body of work of an artist who experimented extensively with styles and materials. Fortunately, taking pictures was allowed so I can now share them with you.  Continue reading

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Kinga Kozakowska at the International Miniature Art Biennial

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Mini by Kinga Kozakowska

Mini by Kinga Kozakowska

Kinga has been invited to participate in the 11th International Miniature Art Biennial (IMBA) to take place from 6 June – 29 September at Gallery Rift in Ville-Marie, Canada.

Kinga will present several of her miniatures along with 400 miniature works of art from professional artists coming from 20 countries from the five continents. More than 6,000 visitors are expected to visit the exhibition as well as some 4,000 visits on the webpage from around the world.

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Art of Modelling

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Marie Jonsson-Harrison and daughter, ARTnBED launch, NY

Marie Jonsson-Harrison and daughter, ARTnBED launch, NY

Marie Jonsson-Harrison is a woman of many talents. As you can read in her blog post  The art of Modelling for Mothers Dag, she is occasionally resuming with great pleasure her carreer as a model. In her post Marie is also touching upon the issue of age for modelling and the trend sparked by the baby boomer generation wanting to see themselves represented on the catwalk.

This photo was taken for the launch of duvet covers by  ARTnBED in New York. Its features Marie and her daughter in front of a cover reproducing her painting “The True Colors of Hindley Street”. What a fun it must have been to pose together with your own beautiful daughter!


Category: Artists, Design, Events

Glass at Its Best in the Swedish Kingdom of Crystal

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Bergdala - glass work

Bergdala – glass work
Photo: Anemone Nemorosa

Swedish glass is renowned throughout the world as objects of collection displaying a recognizable scandivanian design. Most Swedish glass come from a specific region that has an incredibly beautiful nature. So taking a trip to see the region as well as the glass works is an incredible treat. Just read my article !


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Quétard/Sanae on Japanese calendar

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2014 calendar - paintings by Quétard and Kushibiki

2014 calendar – paintings by Quétard and Kushibiki

Illustration for month of May by Quétard and Kushibiki

Illustration for month of May by Quétard and Kushibiki

The Japanese Post Office did choose paintings by Jacky Quétard and Sanaé Kushibiki to illustrate their 2014 Calendar. This is a very fine edition for their VIP clients with metallic colours. Besides, the cover page and the page for the month of May.