Friday, April 26, 2013

Normandy Celebrates Impressionism From April 27th Through September 29th


    Back for a second year, the Normandy Impressionist Festival celebrates the birth of the 19th-century art movement in the region where it all started.

    Impressionism began in Normandy in 1872 when Monet painted the sea in Le Havre and called it Impression: Sunrise, penning the term "Impressionism" for the first time. From then on, artists like Pissarro, Manet, Renoir and Signac adopted this new style of blurring lines, sweeping brush strokes and blending pastel colors to capture the French countryside in an entirely new way.

    This year's edition celebrates the theme of "water," a favorite motif used by the painters of that time, who were inspired by the scenic coastlines and vibrant natural colors.
    Over 600 events will be held across Normandy from April to September including art installations, special film screenings, riverside picnics and waterfront concerts. On June 2, art enthusiasts will have the chance to create masterpieces of their own, taking inspiration from the impressionists' favorite spots at Normandy's "Painting Festival." For this event, the public will be encouraged to set up canvases by the seaside, take part in creating a fresco, and meet professional artists. Even more, the Grand Hotel in Cabourg will be lit up every Sunday throughout the summer, recreating the roaring 20s era of seaside bathing by projecting images on the hotel's façade.

    Major exhibits on the agenda:
    • Rouen, Musée des Beaux-Arts: "Dazzling Reflections," April 29 - September 30
    A display of 100 Impressionist masterpieces centered on images reflected through water

    • Caen, Musée des Beaux-Arts: "A Summer at the Water's Edge: Leisure and Impressionism," April 27 - September 29
    A showcase of 80 paintings depicting people enjoying leisure activities by the water

    • Le Havre, Musée André Malraux: "Pissarro and the Ports: Rouen, Dieppe, Le Havre," April 27 - September 29
    Works by Pissarro featuring industrial ports, as well as art by his contemporaries who continued the trend

    • Giverny, Musée des Impressionnismes: "Signac, the Colours of Water," March 29 - July 2
    Signac's brilliant conveyance of the play of light with water

    • Giverny, Musée des Impressionnismes: "Hiramatsu, the Lily Pond: Homage to Monet," July 13 - October 31
    Japanese artist Hiramatsu's modern reinterpretations of Monet's iconic lily ponds

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