Painters Paintings Maurice Denis (1870-1943), Les Muses (The Muses), 1893, Oil on canvas, 171.5 x 1…
Painters Work Maurice Denis (1870-1943), Les Muses (The Muses), 1893, Oil on canvas, 171.5 x 137.5 cm, Musée d’Orsay, Paris
On 12 June 1893 Denis married his nice love, Marthe Meurier. The reception was held on the terrace in entrance of the Pavilion of Henri IV within the forest of St-Germain-en-Laye, Paris, which had been the setting for Denis’ main portray The Muses, accomplished earlier that yr. This huge ornamental composition was each a big illustration of the artist’s type on the time, in addition to a outstanding prefiguring of Artwork Nouveau, which emerged within the mid 1890s.
For Denis – like one in all his heroes, Cézanne – it was not sufficient to only copy nature. For this canvas, he has taken the topic of the Muses of Greek literature, wherein 9 goddesses had been related to 9 arts and recognized by 9 symbols. Denis has chosen to color his new spouse because the three principal figures within the foreground. She is proven because the illustration of ‘Artwork’ (with a sketch guide on her lap), as ‘Love’ (seen from behind, wearing a ball-gown with the luminous pores and skin of her shoulders and again revealed), and as ‘Faith’ (together with her hair veiled and her spiritual textual content open). Additional feminine figures pose quietly among the many century-old chestnut timber, which give the composition rhythm and ornamental energy. The common strokes of the tree trunks are a pretext for a play of vertical traces which distinction with the curves and decorative arabesques of the branches, the leaves strewn on the bottom, and the patterns and folds of the attire. The graphic play of traces and interlacing is intensified by the unreal, autumnal colors, painted in areas of flat color and neatly outlined. The sinuous traces and ornamental patterning of the timber—their trunks, their leaves, and the leaf-strewn floor which seems like a Persian carpet—creates a way of other-worldliness, thriller and stillness.