sunday afternoon on the island of la grande jatte painting

Sunday afternoon on the island of la grande jatte painting
The May 1976 issue of Playboy magazine featured Nancy Cameron—Playmate of the Month in January 1974—on its cover, superimposed on the painting in similar style. The often hidden bunny logo was disguised as one of the millions of dots. [22]
In 1958, the painting was loaned out for the only time: to the Museum of Modern Art in New York. On 15 April 1958, a fire there, which killed one person on the second floor of the museum, forced the evacuation of the painting, which had been on a floor above the fire in the Whitney Museum, which adjoined MoMA at the time. [21]

Sunday afternoon on the island of la grande jatte painting
In 1881, after studying at the Ecole des Beaux-Arts, followed by a short spell of military service, Seurat opened a small painter’s studio in Paris while continuing his studies on the tonal effects of colour, with a series of conte crayon drawings. He was determined to develop an intellectual style of painting that would open up new possibilities for art. The technique he settled on – later nicknamed ‘Pointillism’ by the art critic Felix Feneon (1861-1944) – involved the use of small touches of pure colour, which are not mixed but placed side by side on the canvas. When viewed from a certain distance, these touches of colour blend together. In effect, the colour pigments are mixed together by the eye, rather than by the artist. The whole idea is to make the colours more luminous and shimmering than they would be if mixed on the palette. See also: Colour Theory in Fine Art Painting.

A Sunday Afternoon on the Island of La Grande Jatte (1884-6)
By Georges Seurat. One of the greatest modern paintings of the 19th century.

Sunday afternoon on the island of la grande jatte painting
Though the subjects of A Sunday Afternoon on the Island of La Grande Jatte are rendered in an unrealistic and almost minimalist style, Seurat opted to place them in a range of positions (“of some we see the backs, some we see full-face, some in profile, some are seated at right angles, some are stretched out horizontally, some are standing up straight,” art critic Félix Fénéon remarked in 1886). This decision adds a sense of realism to the otherwise stylized depiction and helps draws the viewer into the receding scenery.
A Sunday Afternoon on the Island of La Grande Jatte depicts a typical outing for Parisians living in the 1880s. Facing the shimmering river and relying on umbrellas and trees for shade, they appear to enjoy a brief escape from city life, whether they’re lounging on the grass, fishing in the river, or even admiring the ambiance in the company of a pet monkey.

Sunday afternoon on the island of la grande jatte painting
The border of the painting is, unusually, in inverted color. This was Seurat’s last addition to the painting and it makes the entire piece appear as if it’s slowly inverting.
La Grande Jatte, toward Clichy, 2006, via wikipedia.org

Sunday afternoon on the island of la grande jatte painting
Seurat’s style of painting broadly diverged from his school and upon leaving it he decided to travel to the Island of La Grande Jatte. It was here that he was to find the inspiration for his landmark work of art and cement his reputation as an artist forever.
On the banks of the river Seine, the island represented a new type of modernity for leisure for some of Paris’ wealthier citizens. The island inspired Seurat to paint perhaps the most notorious work of his short-lived career.

References:

http://www.visual-arts-cork.com/paintings-analysis/sunday-afternoon-on-grande-jatte.htm
http://mymodernmet.com/georges-seurat-a-sunday-afternoon-on-the-island-of-la-grande-jatte/
http://www.widewalls.ch/a-sunday-afternoon-on-the-island-of-la-grande-jatte-georges-seurat/
http://www.artble.com/artists/georges_seurat/paintings/a_sunday_afternoon_on_the_island_of_la_grande_jatte
http://www.visual-arts-cork.com/paintings-analysis/sunday-afternoon-on-grande-jatte.htm

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