The exhibition at the Hôtel de Caumont Art Center
Joaquin SOROLLA - Spanish Lights
from July 10 to November 1, 2020
(every day from 10 a.m. to 7 p.m.)
In 2020, the Hôtel de Caumont-Center d'art honors Joaquín Sorolla (1863-1923), one of the greatest names in 20th century Spanish painting, alongside Velázquez and Goya. We owe him one of the most striking and dazzling representations of a luminous and Mediterranean Spain, optimistic and modern.
The international exhibitions devoted to Sorolla, held over the past ten years, have underlined the strength of the painter's international influence, his success in major European artistic competitions, such as the Paris Salon or the Secession exhibitions in Munich, Vienna and Berlin. , as well as the importance of his solo exhibitions in major European and North American cities. Several of the artistic and stylistic characteristics that he shared with European and American masters of his generation, such as Sargent, Zorn, Degas or Monet, were highlighted, and made him one of the most important and influential artists of his time. .
The exhibition at the Hôtel de Caumont is based on several researches in order to address the way in which Sorolla constructed his work. Based on naturalism, under the influence of Bastien- Page, his painting remains very marked by the constant reference to Velázquez, whom he considered to be his great master. This solid base will be enriched by his free and luminous brushstroke, close to Impressionism, and by his interpretation of light and color incredibly vitalist and innovative. His impeccable compositions, informed by the new framing possibilities of photography, as well as by the influence of Japanese prints, captivate us with their spontaneity and immediacy, just as they challenge us by their modernity.
In this perspective, the exhibition focuses on three fundamental questions: the artist's creative process, the sources of the main subjects of his work and the evolution of these subjects within his production. Alongside ambitious large-format works, are exhibited small drawings and oil notes, shedding new light on the painter and his conception of art which is brimming with luminosity and spontaneity. Essential to Sorolla, these small-format works allowed him to identify the subjects he was exploring, to test compositions or combinations of colors.
The exhibition also brings together a collection of photographs, drawings and the abundant correspondence of the artist who never stopped painting. The great wealth of documentation available in the archives of the Sorolla Museum underlines his indefatigable, almost obsessive character, and allows us to analyze the way in which Sorolla has developed his most personal style.