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Thursday, 7 April 2022

Painting of the Month (100): Cezanne

This is the 100th time that I have posted a Painting of the Month, so I am really being self-indulgent today! I have long been intrigued by Cezanne's series of paintings of Mont Saint-Victoire; I have given talks on the topic, blogged about it and deeply researched it. This is one of my favourite paintings of all time!

Mont Saint-Victoire, Aix-en-Provence. Depicted more than 60 times by Cezanne.
I'm listening to the late Amy Winehouse singing Don't Go To Strangers with Paul Weller and Jools Holland. What an incredible talent we have lost! Listen here.


Hels said...

I often wondered why C├ęzanne, who could have painted anything he wanted, came back so often to paint Montagne Sainte-Victoire and its surrounds. Yes he lived most of his life in Aix, and and yes he had ready access to the views from his house. But what explained his obsessive return to the theme over and over again?

Since the series was painted in the last two years of his life, I am guessing the mountain had some sort of nostalgic memory connected to his love life.

NanaDiana said...

That is just a gorgeous painting. It is always so interesting to see different artists depictions of the same area/thing. Diana

Parnassus said...

Hello Bazza, I suppose that a looming mountain will always have metaphoric value. I wish that I could have heard your talks on the series. In the painting you show, there is almost an anthropomorphic quality to the mountain, but I quickly looked at some other versions and there are quite a variety of impressions. I will have to come back to these paintings when I have more time to contemplate them.

bazza said...

Hels: The most amazing thing is that Cezanne managed to say something new in virtually everyone of the paintings. He was interested in the geometry of the view and famously declared that the visual word could be divided into the sphere, the cylinder and the cone.

bazza said...

Diana: I agree with your comment! Monet painted multiple views of Haystacks and of the Cathedral in Rouen but, for me, it was Cezanne who managed to extract the most from a single subject.

bazza said...

Jim: I think Mont Sainte Victoire did have a metaphoric element for Cezanne but further than that, it was also symbolic. Even before he painted it, the mountain had local significance dating back to Roman times.

Hilary Melton-Butcher said...

Hi Bszza - thank you ... I really need educating about art ... and this Cezanne work has opened my eyes; and I'd love to listen to one of your talks - I enjoy your posts - they enlighten me ... cheers Hilary

bazza said...

Hilary: Sorry for the late reply! I've been busy! I am a BIG fan of Cezanne and my wife has just told me that there is an exhibition in London in October.