Theme of ‘Ode to Nature – In Gardens & The Wild’ attracting British gardeners & Art lovers to 29th Salon du Dessin – the World’s Premier art drawing fair in Paris.
Greener than ever, the Salon du Dessin will devote this year’s International Symposium to the art of gardens and botany. The 2020 fair guest, the Musées de Marseille, will present a selection of their best works based on nature and several galleries will present drawings related to the theme.
The work of Walter Leistikow, an avant-garde Berlin artist active at the end of the 19th century, can be found in the museums of Berlin, Munich and Leipzig. His contacts with Edvard Munch, his travels in northern countries and a stay in Paris in 1893 influenced the naturalist, symbolic lyricism seen in this watercolor and gouache on paper presented by Martin Moeller & Cie.
Ode to nature: atmosphere
Gustave Doré, a seasoned hiker, painted the Alps, the hills of Scotland, the Brittany coastline and other natural areas. The artist made marvelous use of watercolors in his landscapes, as can be seen in this picture of the setting sun in the mountains, to be presented at the fair by Galerie Terrades.
The New York gallery W.M. Brady and Co. will present a beautiful pencil drawing by Georges Seurat, Rain, which belonged to the collection of the American John Quinn (1870-1924). Seurat, who loved to draw, takes this black-and-white study to the limit, using a soft Conté crayon on coarse-grained Ingres paper to represent the gradations of light and shade.
Gérard de Palézieux (1919-2012) was a little-known Swiss artist whose work was revealed to the public through a wonderful exhibition at the Fondation Custodia in Paris in 2019. An outstanding illustrator, Palézieux excelled at still lifes and was also a great landscape artist. The Swiss gallery Ditesheim & Maffei will feature a group of delicate works by the artist, a follower of Corot.
The virgin forest flourishes in Sam Szafran’s work. A good example is this watercolor, to be shown by Galerie Berès. Szafran became enamored of nature in the 1970s, when he discovered a plant genus that was new to him, the philodendron, in the Paris studio of a friend, the painter Zao Wou-Ki. “That was when my obsession with plants found the best way to express itself”, he said.
In 1901, Henri le Sidaner moved to Gerberoy, in the Oise department of France, where he created three monochrome gardens: an all-white garden, a rose garden (site of his summer studio) and a yellow and blue garden. In this beautiful work on paper presented by Talabardon & Gautier, the painter evocatively depicts the softness and clarity of the moonlight on the plants.
The London gallery Stephen Ongpin Fine Art will present two watercolors and gouaches on paper by Jacques le Moyne de Morgues, a famous cartographer and illustrator who accompanied Jean Ribault’s second expedition to the New World in 1562. He is known for his artistic depiction of the landscape and flora and fauna, and for his descriptions of the inhabitants.
From his youth in the Jura until his death on the shores of the Mediterranean, Le Corbusier was always interacting with nature: he collected stones, bones and shells, experimented with a wealth of materials and sought to bring green spaces to the city. He was also fascinated by women’s bodies, as seen in a work presented by Galerie Brame & Lorenceau.
A watercolor and gouache by Hans Reichel to be shown by Martin Moeller & Cie, demonstrates the artist’s kinship with Klee: witness the bird, the blade of grass and the star. Reichel and Klee worked together in Munich during the war, then at the Bauhaus in Weimar in the 1920s, an adventure they experienced together, both of them somewhat on the sidelines. Reichel moved to Paris in 1928 and died there 30 years later.
Three centuries of drawings from the Musées de Marseille – Nature in all its states
The presence of the Salon du dessin’s guest this year, the Musée des Beaux-Arts de Marseille, offers an opportunity to show a selection of drawings from its graphic arts department as well as from two other Marseille museums with Old Master drawing collections, the Musée Grobet-Labadié and the Musée des Arts Décoratifs, de la Faïence et de la Mode. In line with the theme of this year’s fair, the art of gardens and botany, works depicting nature in one form or another were selected from the three museums’ collections. Forty drawings dating from the 15th to the 19th century – including works by Pierre Puget, Jean-Baptiste Huet, Jean-Honoré Fragonard, Hubert Robert, Jean-Antoine Constantin and Camille Corot – will offer a sampling of the treasures to be found in Marseille’s museums.
Salon du Dessin: Open noon-8 p.m., until 10 p.m. on Thursday, March 26
Admission: €15 – Free catalogue
Palais Brongniart, Paris March 25–30, 2020
Press Opening: Tuesday, March 24, 2020, 2 p.m.