Inspired by a visit to the Capodimonte Museum in Naples, Rebecca Harp muses on the paintings of Bruegel.
Harp writes: " I am not sure if there is anything quite like coming across a Bruegel painting when visiting a museum, being both very poignant and invigorating for the eye and mind at the same time. There are times when I am just exhausted from seeing so many famous paintings and crumbling fragments and “formal concerns.” Coming across a panel of such perfectly sustained, fragrant colors that are hundreds of years old, with so many details to linger over and a continually relevant life theme to ponder, is perhaps art absorption at its dearest and finest."
After watching Lech Majewski's new film, The Mill and the Cross, Sharon Butler considers the fate of storytelling in painting.
Butler writes: " ...we often rush past the history paintings, but in the sixteenth century, these paintings were like epic feature films. Looking at older paintings, especially those painted by Dutch and Flemish masters who had phenomenal technique, contemporary painters are easily seduced by the paint handling and forget about the story... What stories will the paintings we make tell future generations--or have we already left the storytelling to filmmakers?"
Kiša Lala interviews director Lech Majewski about his new film, The Mill and the Cross, where he seeks to recreate Bruegel's paintings on film.
Majewski notes that Bruegel "is a realist in looking at human conditions. He is a profound observer. I feel a lot of compassion in his paintings, a softening for Flanders and its people. He is compassionate in his depiction, but realistic…it is the inbred condition of human beings, that’s the way it is…to be cynical you have to be on purpose, so to say."
Lala's post also includes a video of the making of the film.
Andrea Kirsh reviews Lech Majewski's The Mill and the Cross, a new biogrphical film about the artist Pieter Bruegel the Elder.
Kirsh writes that "Majewski captures Bruegel's truth that great events occur amidst the shapeless narrative of everyday life. Just as remarkable is the effect he creates of taking us into the actual space of Bruegel's painting. His characters, in perfect period costumes (if a bit too clean) and cast with remarkable fidelity to Bruegel's coarse-featured peasants, move in and out of the painting as landscape settings switch between filmed and painted image."
After screenings at Sundance and the Rotterdam Film Festival the film opens on September 14, 2011 at Film Forum, New York.
Liz Hager reviews the novel Headlong by Michael Frayn, a "thoroughly engaging tale of the easily distracted and ethically challenged philosopher, who convinces himself that he has discovered a 'lost' Bruegel."
The Prado, home to so many masterpieces now houses one more "The Wine of St. Martin's Day" by Pieter Breugel the Elder. The painting has been in the Prado's collection but was recently re-attributed. The New York Times has a nice interactive feature where you can mouse over the painting to zoom in for a closer look. Painters' Table recommends a visit to the Prado to see the work in person but the Times feature offers a nice preview and they published a related article you can read as well.
Edited by artist Brett Baker, Painters' Table highlights writing from the painting blogosphere as it is published and serves as a platform for exploring blogs that focus primarily on the subject of painting.