Frederick Arthur Bridgman – The Siesta (1878)

By the end of the 19th century the allure of the Orient and the “far away” was sweeping over Europe and North America. Following Napoleon’s 1798 – 1801 invasion of Egypt, other expeditions followed, drawn in particular towards the Middle East and North Africa. Scientists traveled alongside artists, in an attempt to decipher the exoticism…

Alfons Mucha – The Abolition of Serfdom in Russia (1914)

Born in the Austrian Empire, in present day Czech Republic, Alfons Mucha (1860 – 1939) was primarily known for his Art Nouveau posters and illustrations. Lesser known is his painting series “Slav Epic”, completed after a visit to Russia in 1913. Among the first paintings of the series was The Abolition of Serfdom in Russia…

Horace Vernet – The Arab Tale-teller (1833)

Émile Jean-Horace Vernet (1789 – 1863) was a French Romantic painter, best known for his very detailed battle scenes and noble portraits. Very early on in his career, Vernet was commissioned by the duke of Orléans, the future King Louis – Philippe, to depict important battle scenes from France’s recent history. After the duke became a…

René Magritte – The Lovers (1928)

“We are surrounded by curtains. We only perceive the world behind a curtain of semblance. At the same time, an object needs to be covered in order to be recognized at all.”   René Magritte Known for his artistic questioning of our perception of reality, René Magritte (1898 – 1967) was a Belgian Surrealist painter that didn’t…

Berthe Morisot – Julie Daydreaming (1894)

Berthe Morisot (1841 – 1895) was a French artist, the least known member today of the Impressionists’ group that included Claude Monet, Edgar Degas, Paul Cézanne, Camille Pissarro, Pierre-Auguste Renoir and Alfred Sissley. Morisot developed a great friendship and collaboration with Édouard Manet, posing for him several times through the years. In 1874 she married…

Orest Kiprensky – Self-portrait with Brushes Behind the Ear (1808)

A worthy representative of the art movement Romanticism, Orest Kiprensky (1782 – 1836) was a Russian portraitist, most famous for his 1827 painting of Alexander Pushkin. As a testament to Kiprensky’s skill, upon its completion, Pushkin, the great Russian poet, is alleged to have said “the mirror flatters me”. Kiprensky completed several self-portraits during his…