Sunday, December 8, 2013

Impressionists on the Water, PEM, Salem, MA

I enjoyed this visit and especially things that are not being advertised much.  Specifically, there are two gorgeous wooden boats on display and a replica (sort of) of a houseboat that an artist could paint from on the waters of the rivers.  This was life-size and you could go into it and sit, etc.   “The Floating Studio,” a boat Daubigny acquired to allow him to work directly on the waterways and that he named “Le Botin” (Little Box). Inspired by Daubigny, Monet created a similar vessel in order to take to the water to paint, captured in his “The Studio Boat” (1874).

Here is a link to a site of this show at another museum that has a video clip that shows the other two boats: one is a two-person scull type of boat called a "Gig"-- “Nana” (1890), a large and imposing cedar French cruising gig and an example of the sophisticated design of Fernand Delmez frequently depicted in the paintings of Monet and Renoir and and the other looks like a early version of a kayak.  Here is a link to a VIDEO that shows "Nana" being shipped and unpacked and installed in the show!

There were several boat paintings by Gustave Caillebotte, one of my favorite artists, famous for his painting (above) of a Rainy Day in Paris.  It seems that he was an able sailor, preferring boating over painting.