April 29, 2013

Must-see modernism at Portland museum

The Portland Museum of Art unveils its main event for summer, a gift from a media titan who had an astute eye for art.

By Bob Keyes bkeyes@pressherald.com
Staff Writer

(Continued from page 2)

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“M. de Lauradour,” oil and gouache on cardboard by Henri de Toulouse-Lautrec, 1897.

All images © The Museum of Modern Art, New York. The William S. Paley Collection

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“Two Dancers,” charcoal and pastel on tracing paper by Edgar Degas, 1905.

Additional Photos Below



WHEN: Opens Thursday and runs through Sept. 8

HOURS: 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Tuesday to Sunday, with extended hours to 9 p.m. Friday; after Memorial Day, the museum will be open 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Mondays

WHERE: Portland Museum of Art, 7 Congress Square

HOW MUCH: $17; $15 for seniors and students with ID; $11 for ages 13 to 17; free for children age 12 and younger

INFO: 775-6148; portlandmuseum.org

The Gauguin, "The Seed of the Areoi" from 1912, is an oil-on-burlap depiction of a young naked Tahiti woman (who happened to be the artist's mistress) holding a sprouting mango seed with other colorful fruit on a table beside her. The symbolism is rampant, and the subject mysterious in her naked pose. Most impressive may be the colors: The burlap is awash in the lush colors of the exotic South Pacific paradise.

Cezanne's "L'Estaque," from the early 1880s, is a nice landscape painting of the small French fishing village favored by artists of that time. Many came here to paint, and Cezanne's depiction captures a view with rooftops in the foreground and the hills and water beyond.

It's a beautiful, peaceful painting that is notable for at least two reasons. One, Cezanne employed many different painterly techniques on this single effort, including loose, rolling brush strokes in his puffy white clouds and firm, almost pointillist brush work in the rocks and trees.

Second, Claude Monet owned this painting before Paley. The collector purchased it from Monet's son in the 1930s.

"Paley had the means, which meant that he had access to all the great works," Burgess said. "This is a great example of that."

Staff Writer Bob Keyes can be contacted at 791-6457 or:


Twitter: pphbkeyes


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Additional Photos

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“Woman with a Veil,” oil on canvas by Henri Matisse, 1927

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“Self-Portrait in a Straw Hat,” oil on canvas by Paul Cezanne, 1875-76

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Cezanne’s “L’Estaque,” oil on canvas, 1879-84

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“Washer-women,” oil on canvas by Paul Gauguin, 1888


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