Tuesday, September 16, 2014

Gauguin and his buddies

Paul Gauguin, one of a group of French artists in the late 19th century, spent several of his productive years in Brittany.  He lived at La Maison de Marie Henry, an inn in Le Pouldu for about four years along with other artists.  The three-bedroom house was owned by Marie Henry whose own life was somewhat bohemian as an independent single mother.

While there, Gauguin and his friend painted over the walls,  ceiling and windows of the dining room.
Gauguin panel above fireplace
The painting was discovered when wallpaper was removed in the 1920s.

Self-portrait on back of door
Now a museum, we walked around with an iPad in our hands reading the information and listening to the piped-in atmospheric sound effects (gurgling child in the Madame's bedroom, orders for wine in the bar area, kitchen noises, conversations in the dining room).

Window panel
Gauguin left his wife and five children in Denmark to pursue his art in France and beyond and collected several illegitimate children in other parts of the world--especially Tahiti where he died in 1903.

We moved on from Le Pouldu to visit Pont Aven to explore this lovely flower-laden town made famous by the Pont-Aven School, which promoted "synthetism," the style of art practiced by Paul Gauguin.
On the River Aven

Pont Aven was crawling with tourists--mostly over 50, many galleries, lots of watercolor painters set up around the Aven river.

Flowers everywhere
Once again, the tidal flow of the river is extreme with boats in the water when we arrived and leaning on their side or sitting up straight on the mudflats when we left.

There were many houses "en vende" (for sale), which made us fantasize (as a fantasy it would be) about living in one of them.
Boats in the mud

The photos tell the story.

No comments:

Post a Comment