Henri Rousseau – Archaic candour in show in Venice

His genius has always been impossible to categorize.  Henri Rousseau (Laval, 1844 – Paris, 1910) is famous for his dreamlike atmospheres, forests and enchanted landscapes. Any attempt to pigeonhole his work is pointless, the power of his painting is a phenomenon unparalleled in the field of art between the 19th and the 20th century. The Foundation of the Civic Museums in Venice is dedicating an extraordinary exhibition to Rousseau, known also as Le Douanier, realized with the scientific collaboration and exceptional loans from the The Musée d’Orsay and the Musée de l’Orangerie, under the patronage  of the Soprintendenza per i Beni Architettonici a Paesaggistici of Venice and Laguna. The event, produced by 24 Ore Cultura – Gruppo 24 Ore, features over a hundred works from major international institutions.

The fascinating Doge’s Apartments of the Doge’s Palace will be the setting of the event. Divided into eight thematic sections, the exhibition presents a number of the French painter’s most renowned masterpieces for the first time ever in Italy, including “Myself”, which he regarded as the first “landscape-portrait” in the history of art, “The Poultry Yard”, purchased by Kandinsky and shown at the first Blaue Reiter exhibition in Munich, and the “War or The Ride of Discord”.

The exhibition also offers visitors an opportunity to relive the emotions of the famous banquet held by Picasso in the Douanier’s honour in 1908 after buying his Portrait of a Woman. Rousseau’s painting will be exhibited opposite Picasso’s Bottle of Bass in a room adorned with the poem that Guillaume Apollinaire addressed to Rousseau during the celebrated banquet.

Henri Rousseau

Archaic candour

6 March – 5 July  2015

Venice, Doge’s Palace – Doge’s Apartments


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