Thursday, 13 October 2016

New graphic novel about Charles-François Daubigny, with exhibition at the Van Gogh Museum, Mesdag Collectie, and Jacob Smitsmuseum

For my 500th post, I make no attempt to present a sleeper masterpiece from some auction, but instead move away from my usual routine to promote a new book by a friend of mine, Luc Cromheecke: "De Tuin van Daubigny" ("The Garden of Daubigny"), published on 12 October 2016 by Blloan.

Cromheecke is a Belgian comics artist with a career spanning more than 30 years and some 20 comic books so far. He has worked for newspapers and magazines in Belgium, France and the Netherlands, and his work was translated in German, Indonesian, ... In 2015, he received the "Bronzen Adhemar", the highest award for a Flemish comics artist. While until now, his work mainly was aimed at the juvenile market and/or filled with absurd humour, he now has published a comic book (or graphic novel, whichever you prefer) about the life and art of Charles-François Daubigny, with the story written by Bruno de Roover, an experienced comics writer. They worked 5 years on the project, in collaboration with the Van Gogh Museum.

Daubigny (1817-1878) was a French plain air painter, leading member of the school of Barbizon and precursor to the Impressionists and Postimpressionists. He was not only close friends with contemporary artists like Corot and honoré Daumier, but also a friend of and influence on Monet and Gauguin, and was much admired by Vincent Van Gogh.

Van Gogh expressed sadness about the death of Daubigny in one of his earliest surviving letters, and discussed Daubigny and his garden in his last letter before his death. The Garden of Daubigny, in Auvers, was still owned by Daubigny's widow when Van Gogh moved there at the end of his life, and he painted it three times, with one version now owned by the van Gogh Museum in Amsterdam. One of the versions is probably the last work he ever finished.

On 21 October 2016 starts at the Van Gogh Museum in Amsterdam an exhibition about "Daubigny, Monet, Van Gogh", with an accompanying exhibition in The Hague at the Mesdag Collectie. Hendrik Willem Mesdag (1831-1915) was not only an important landscape painter in his own right, but also a major collector of modern art: his collection, which is now a museum, includes more than 25 works by Daubigny, the largest such collection outside of France. The museum is owned by the Van Gogh Museum. An exhibition from 2 December 2016 until 5 March 2017 will show the original drawings by Cromheecke with the original paintings by Daubigny side by side. The original drawings will then be displayed from the end of 2017 until somewhere in 2018 at the Jacob Smitsmuseum in Mol, Belgium (Jacob Smits was a Dutch landscape painter who moved to Belgium).

The book is for now only available in Dutch, but a French translation is planned and an English and German translation will be promoted at the Frankfurter Buchmesse.

The above are some examples of his regular comic art (I picked some pieces that can work as stand-alone images and are understandable for everyone).

All images on this page (except for the Daubigny and the Van Gogh of course) are copyright Cromheecke and his publishers!

UPDATE: a few minor corrections made after I was very kindly contacted by the Van Gogh Museum. 

No comments:

Post a Comment