Royal Academy exhibition to explore the garden in art

Spo Brig

Spo Brig

2015-07-07 10:08:39

A major new exhibition exploring the link between horticulture and European art is heading to the Royal Academy of Arts next year.

'Painting the Modern Garden: Monet to Matisse' will feature more than 120 important works dating from the 1860s to the 1920s, spanning Impressionism, Post-Impressionism and the Avant-Garde.

The centrepiece of the exhibition will be a collection of 35 works by Claude Monet, on loan from some of the world's finest institutions including the State Hermitage Museum in St Petersburg, the Musée d'Orsay in Paris and the Nelson-Atkins Museum of Art in Kansas City.

Monet has been described as "arguably the most important painter of gardens in the history of art", and his symbiotic relationship with his own garden produced his most timeless works. Indeed, his entire artistic career can be traced through his passion for the subject, and he himself once wrote "I perhaps owe it to flowers that I became a painter".

In addition to a magnificent selection of Monet’s iconic water lily paintings, the exhibition will also include documentary materials that reveal the artist's love of horticulture such as letters, books and journals, and even receipts for purchases of plants.

The exhibition will also display garden-theme artworks from the likes of Edouard Manet, Camille Pissarro, Paul Cézanne, Henri Matisse, Paul Klee, Vincent van Gogh, Gustav Klimt, Emil Nolde and Wassily Kandinsky, with many of them rarely viewed by the public.

The exhibition seeks to frame these artworks in the context of both artistic and socio-political movements, offering "unprecedented paths for understanding the garden as a multifaceted, universal theme in modern art".

“Supporting the arts is deeply stitched into the fabric of BNY Mellon’s heritage," said Michael Cole-Fontayn, Chairman of Europe, Middle East and Africa for exhibition sponsors BNY Mellon. "In today’s fast-paced society, art also offers us moments of stillness and reflection. We have enjoyed a very special partnership with the Royal Academy since 2007 and we are thrilled to be involved in bringing this exciting new exhibition, Painting the Modern Garden: Monet to Matisse, to London in the New Year.”

'Painting the Modern Garden: Monet to Matisse' opens at the Cleveland Museum of Art in Ohio on October 11, 2015, and runs until January 5, 2016, before heading to the Royal Academy of Arts in London on January 30, 2016.

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