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Paul Gauguin
Zeta
Grand Member (2 years)  

Joined: Feb 13, 2007
Posts: 2049
From: Atlantis/Basque Country/Spain/Mexico
Posted: 2009-03-17 1:22 pm   Permalink

This is where we will post everything about the French painter.

On this spot was the house where Paul Gaugin lived from 1896 to 1901.

Paul Gauguin
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Paul Gauguin

Birth name Eugène Henri Paul Gauguin
Born 7 June 1848(1848-06-07)
Paris, France
Died 8 May 1903 (aged 54)
Atuona, Marquesas Islands, French Polynesia
Nationality French
Field painting, engraving
Movement Post-Impressionism, Primitivism

Eugène Henri Paul Gauguin (7 June 1848 – 8 May 1903) was a leading Post-Impressionist painter. His bold experimentation with coloring led directly to the Synthetist style of modern art while his expression of the inherent meaning of the subjects in his paintings, under the influence of the cloisonnist style, paved the way to Primitivism and the return to the pastoral. He was also an influential proponent of wood engraving and woodcuts as art forms.[1][2]
Contents
[hide]

* 1 Life
* 2 Historical significance
* 3 Legacy
o 3.1 List of paintings by Paul Gauguin
* 4 Gallery
* 5 Self-portraits
* 6 See also
* 7 Further reading and sources
* 8 References
* 9 External links

[edit] Life
Paul Gauguin, 1891, unknown photographer

Paul Gauguin was born in Paris, France, to journalist Clovis Gauguin and half-Peruvian Aline Maria Chazal, the daughter of proto-socialist leader Flora Tristan. In 1851 the family left Paris for Peru, motivated by the political climate of the period. Clovis died on the voyage, leaving three-year old Paul, his mother and his sister to fend for themselves. They lived for four years in Lima, Peru, with Paul’s uncle and his family. The imagery of Peru would later influence Paul in his art.

At the age of seven, Paul returned to France with his family. They moved to Orléans, France, to live with his grandfather. He soon learned French and excelled in his studies. At seventeen, Gauguin signed on as a pilot’s assistant in the merchant marine to fulfill his required military service. Three years later, he joined the navy where he stayed for two years. In 1871, Gauguin returned to Paris where he secured a job as a stockbroker. In 1873, he married a Danish woman, Mette Sophie Gad. Over the next ten years, they would have five children.

Gauguin had been interested in art since his childhood. In his free time, he began painting. He also visited galleries frequently and purchased work by emerging artists. Gauguin formed a friendship with artist Camille Pissarro, who introduced him to various other artists. As he progressed in his art, Gauguin rented a studio, and showed paintings in Impressionist exhibitions held in 1881 and 1882. Over two summer vacations, he painted with Camille Pissarro and occasionally Paul Cézanne.
Where Do We Come From? What Are We? Where Are We Going?
1897, oil on canvas
Boston Museum of Fine Arts, Boston, MA, USA

By 1884 Gauguin had moved with his family to Copenhagen, where he pursued a business career as a stockbroker. Driven to paint full-time, he returned to Paris in 1885, leaving his family in Denmark. Without adequate subsistence, his wife (Mette Sophie Gadd) and their five children returned to her family. Gauguin outlived two of his children.

In 1887, after visiting Panama, he spent several months near Saint Pierre in Martinique, in the company of his friend the artist Charles Laval. At first, the 'negro hut' in which they lived suited him and he enjoyed watching people in their daily activities.[3] However, the weather in the summer was hot and the hut leaked in the rain. He also got dysentery and marsh fever. While in Martinique, he produced between ten and twenty works (twelve being the most common estimate). While in Martinique, Gauguin traveled widely there and apparently came into contact with the small community of Indian immigrants, a contact that would later influence his art through the incorporation of Indian symbols.

Like his friend Vincent Van Gogh, with whom in 1888 he spent nine weeks painting in Arles, Paul Gauguin experienced bouts of depression and at one time attempted suicide. Disappointed with Impressionism, he felt that traditional European painting had become too imitative and lacked symbolic depth. By contrast, the art of Africa and Asia seemed to him full of mystic symbolism and vigour. There was a vogue in Europe at the time for the art of other cultures, especially that of Japan (Japonism). He was invited to participate in the 1889 exhibition organized by Les XX.
The Yellow Christ (Le Christ jaune)
1889, oil on canvas. Albright-Knox Art Gallery, Buffalo, NY, USA

Under the influence of folk art and Japanese prints, Gauguin evolved towards Cloisonnism, a style given its name by the critic Édouard Dujardin in response to Emile Bernard's cloisonne enamelling technique. Gauguin was very appreciative of Bernard's art and of his daring with the employment of a style which suited Gauguin in his quest to express the essence of the objects in his art. In The Yellow Christ (1889), often cited as a quintessential Cloisonnist work, the image was reduced to areas of pure colour separated by heavy black outlines. In such works Gauguin paid little attention to classical perspective and boldly eliminated subtle gradations of colour, thereby dispensing with the two most characteristic principles of post-Renaissance painting. His painting later evolved towards Synthetism in which neither form nor colour predominate but each has an equal role.

In 1891, Gauguin, frustrated by lack of recognition at home and financially destitute, sailed to the tropics to escape European civilization and "everything that is artificial and conventional." (Before this he had made several attempts to find a tropical paradise where he could 'live on fish and fruit' and paint in his increasingly primitive style, including short stays in Martinique and as a labourer on the Panama Canal construction, however he was dismissed from his job after only two weeks). Living in Mataiea Village in Tahiti, he painted "Fatata te Miti" ("By the Sea"), "Ia Orana Maria" (Ave Maria) and other depictions of Tahitian life. He moved to Punaauia in 1897, where he created the masterpiece painting "Where Do We Come From" and then lived the rest of his life in the Marquesas Islands, returning to France only once, when he painted at Pont-Aven. His works of that period are full of quasi-religious symbolism and an exoticized view of the inhabitants of Polynesia. In Polynesia he sided with the native peoples, clashing often with the colonial authorities and with the Catholic Church. During this period he also wrote the book Avant et après (before and after), a fragmented collection of observations about life in Polynesia, memories from his life and comments on literature and paintings. In 1903, due to a problem with the church and the government, he was sentenced to three months in prison, and charged a fine. At that time he was being supported by the art dealer Ambroise Vollard[4] He died of syphilis before he could start the prison sentence. His body had been weakened by alcohol and a dissipated life. He was 54 years old.

Gauguin died in 1903 and is buried in Calvary Cemetery (Cimetière Calvaire), Atuona, Hiva ‘Oa, Marquesas Islands, French Polynesia.

[edit] Historical significance
The Spirit of the Dead Keep Watch, 1892, Albright-Knox Art Gallery, Buffalo, NY

Primitivism was an art movement of late 19th century painting and sculpture; characterized by exaggerated body proportions, animal totems, geometric designs and stark contrasts. The first artist to systematically use these effects and achieve broad public success was Paul Gauguin. The European cultural elite discovering the art of Africa, Micronesia, and Native Americans for the first time were fascinated, intrigued and educated by the newness, wildness and the stark power embodied in the art of those faraway places. Like Pablo Picasso in the early days of the 20th century, Gauguin was inspired and motivated by the raw power and simplicity of the so-called Primitive art of those foreign cultures.

Gauguin is also considered a Post-Impressionist painter. His bold, colorful and design oriented paintings significantly influenced Modern art. Gauguin's influence on artists and movements in the early 20th century include Henri Matisse, Pablo Picasso, Georges Braque, André Derain, Fauvism, Cubism, and Orphism among others. John Rewald, one of the first art historians to focus on the birth of modern art, wrote about Post-Impressionism in his pioneering publication called Post-Impressionism: From Van Gogh to Gauguin (1956). Rewald considered it as a continuation of his earlier volume History of Impressionism (1946). In his book about the Post-Impressionists he limited the scope to the years between 1886 and 1892. Rewald mentioned that a "subsequent volume dedicated to the second half of the post-impressionist period"[5] - Post-Impressionism: From Gauguin to Matisse - was to follow, extending the period covered to other artistic movements of the late 19th and early 20th centuries, unfortunately he did not complete that volume. An interesting essay by John Rewald entitled Paul Gauguin-Letters to Ambroise Vollard and André Fontainas, (included in John Rewald Studies in Post-Impressionism, published by Abrams in 1986), discusses Gauguin's years in Tahiti, and the struggles of his survival as seen through correspondence with the dealer Vollard and others.

[edit] Legacy

The vogue for Gauguin's work started soon after his death. Many of his later paintings were acquired by the Russian collector Sergei Shchukin. A substantial part of his collection is displayed in the Pushkin Museum and the Hermitage. Gauguin paintings are rarely offered for sale; their price may be as high as $39.2 million US Dollars.

Gauguin influenced many other painters, but one especially notable connection is his imparting to Arthur Frank Mathews the use of an intense color palette. Mathews met Gauguin in the late 1890s while both were at the Academie Julian. Mathews took this influence in his founding of the California Arts and crafts or California Decorative movement.

The Japanese styled Gauguin Museum, opposite the Botanical Gardens of Papeari in Papeari, Tahiti, contains some exhibits, documents, photographs, reproductions and original sketches and block prints of Gauguin and Tahitians. In 2003, the Paul Gauguin Cultural Center opened in Atuona in the Marquesas Islands.

Paul Gauguin's life inspired Somerset Maugham to write The Moon and Sixpence. It is also the subject of at least two operas: Federico Elizalde's Paul Gauguin (1943), and Gauguin (a synthetic life) by Michael Smetanin and Alison Croggon. Déodat de Séverac wrote his Elegy for piano in memory of Gauguin. Mario Vargas Llosa has also based his 2003 novel The Way to Paradise on Gauguin's life.

Paul Gauguin is referred to in Calvin and Hobbes by Bill Watterson. Calvin is seen walking past his mother, shouting "Paul Gauguin once said, 'Where do we come From? What are we? Where are we going?'" Then, a couple of panels over, Calvin comes back and asks, "Who the heck is Paul Gauguin anyway?"

Gauguin has been sainted by the Ecclesia Gnostica Catholica, a modern revival of Gnosticism.[citation needed]


 
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Zeta
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Joined: Feb 13, 2007
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From: Atlantis/Basque Country/Spain/Mexico
Posted: 2009-03-17 1:27 pm   Permalink

Bodegon con estampa japonesa. 1889

Painting with the "Gauguin mug"


 
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Zeta
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Joined: Feb 13, 2007
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Posted: 2009-03-17 1:30 pm   Permalink

Self-portrait mug.

From the Book of Tiki.


 
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Zeta
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Joined: Feb 13, 2007
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From: Atlantis/Basque Country/Spain/Mexico
Posted: 2009-03-17 1:34 pm   Permalink


Two Figures and Statue.


 
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Zeta
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Joined: Feb 13, 2007
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From: Atlantis/Basque Country/Spain/Mexico
Posted: 2009-03-17 1:42 pm   Permalink

From an Spanish sticker album.

The famous french impressionist painter Paul Gauguin lived a long time in Tahiti, dieing in the island. He painted marvelous paintings of it's landscapes and it's people.


 
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Zeta
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Posted: 2009-03-17 2:31 pm   Permalink

Noa Noa

Written and illustrated by Paul Gauguin
Beautiful book! with affirmations like: "Life in Europe is stupid"


 
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Zeta
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Posted: 2009-03-17 2:35 pm   Permalink


He had a broken nose.


 
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Zeta
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Joined: Feb 13, 2007
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From: Atlantis/Basque Country/Spain/Mexico
Posted: 2009-03-17 2:37 pm   Permalink

From Noa Noa:



 
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Zeta
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From: Atlantis/Basque Country/Spain/Mexico
Posted: 2009-03-17 2:40 pm   Permalink

Charles Chasse

Gauguin without legends.
Printed in Spain


 
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Son-of-Kelbo
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From: NOHO, CA
Posted: 2009-03-17 3:45 pm   Permalink

Great post, Zeta!

We daily enjoy a view of Gauguin's "Tahiti" in our dining room --



Hopefully this thread will attract the same focus to PG's work that the M.Covarrubias thread has for that worthy artist...



 
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ikitnrev
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From: D.C. / Virginia
Posted: 2009-03-17 7:50 pm   Permalink

I've been on a Gauguin kick over the last couple of years - it started when I purchased a replica of a Gauguin print from the Jack Lord estate sale, and I thought I should learn more of the artist. (I have a small collection of Covarrubias books too)

I have since then purchased several books about Gauguin - unfortunately I haven't read them yet, so can add no further details on his life, but catch me in a few years! Here is a brief summary of what I already have - there are many other books on Gauguin out there besides these.


- Noa Noa (first American edition 1961, Reynal publisher)
This edition is amazing - one of those books that simply feels good in your hands, especially when you open the pages and see the glorious colors jump out at you. Found this in a used bookstore near my hometown, and didn't mind that it was a bit pricey


- Paul Gauguin (Great Masters)- text by Anna Barskaya
basic book, large format with color reproductions. The type of book you might find priced at $5 in the clearance sections of Borders, but still nice to look at


- Paul Gauguin - An Erotic Life
the most text-heavy and biographical of all my Gauguin books. From the intro: "I have found that Freudian theories of the roles of sexuality and aggression play in creativity are extraordinary useful in understanding Gauguin." (45 color plates, 30 black and white illustrations)


- Lure of the Exotic - Gauguin in New York Collections
This is the catalog from the 2002 Gauguin exhibit presented at the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York ... the previous major exhibition of Gauguin had been in 1959. Well done, and quite worthy for most everyone here - even features a chapter of things learned from the X-raying of Gauguin's art. (222 illustrations, 134 in color)


- Gauguin Tahiti - The Studio of the South Seas (Shackelford and Freches-Thory)
Just picked this up last weekend, and I would have to say that this is the most impressive of all the books, and the one that would hold the most appeal to us here on Tiki Central. Not only are there color replicas of many of Gauguin prints, but there is a ton of information about Polynesian society, culture, and religion in general. For example, I just opened the book to a page that featured not one, but two color photographs of Easter Island Kava Kava man carvings. The book contains 341 illustrations, 261 in color.


I also should add that about 15 years ago, based on a friend's recommendation, I read Somerset Maugham's book 'The Moon and the Sixpence.' (with no illustrations at all) It was a tough read at first, partly because the main character Strickland (based on Gauguin, but I did not know this at the time) is not very likable. But I kept to it, and by the end my opinion had changed, and I saw the point of it all.

The book's title refers to the quote "so busy yearning for the moon that he never saw the sixpence at his feet" meaning that the artist's yearning to find a true idealistic view of art and beauty overpowers his ability to sustain human relationships and appreciate the ordinary pleasures of life.

Vern




[ This Message was edited by: ikitnrev 2009-03-17 20:06 ]


 
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tiki-riviera
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Joined: May 11, 2003
Posts: 661
From: Long Beach
Posted: 2009-03-18 10:42 am   Permalink


In an ironic twist Edgar Leeteg's son Edgar Jr. is a tour guide in Tahiti giving tours of the island including information about Paul Gaugin, instead of his father whom I consider a much more interesting artist. Thats life.


 
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bigbrotiki
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Joined: Mar 25, 2002
Posts: 11153
From: Tiki Island, above the Silverlake
Posted: 2009-03-18 3:04 pm   Permalink

Indeed, Zeta, a nice long post on one of my pet subjects!

Some, but few, Polynesian bars used Gauguin's art as decor. Here is a well-known example from the BOT, this time in full size, from Tiki Bob's:


(Also one of the very few, rare photos from the Tiki period that actually shows people holding Tiki mugs!)

There also is a dive bar (forgot the name) on the Florida coast that has some very nice Gauguin murals.

Paul Gauguin actually died on Hiva Oa in the Marquesas Islands, in 1903. He had moved there to escape the "fake French atmosphere" of Papeete. Here is my son Diego at his grave in 2002:



I have always been intrigued by the fact that, though he was the first to utilize the dream of the Polynesian lifestyle as an anti-bourgeois, bohemian ideology in his life and work, he rarely employed Polynesian art to do so. Though he did sketch Polynesian sculpture in his sketchbooks, he did not copy it directly to his paintings. Most of his depictions of "idols" and "gods" were symbolically stylized into Asian or humanoid figures:



Maybe the time was not ripe yet for primitive art. Or was he distracted by something else?
One generation later, the members of the German artist group "Die Bruecke", to whom Gauguin was a huge inspiration, freely painted primitive (African) carvings in their works:



In 1895, on his second trip to Tahiti, Gauguin spent 10 days in New Zealand and made several sketches of Maori Tiki carvings he saw at the Auckland museum:







He also copied some Marquesan Tikis from photos:



Here is a recent photo of Takai, the largest Marquesan stone Tiki, (and me in 2002):



I can only think of ONE painting where Gauguin directly referenced a Tiki statue, his 1897 "The Idol":



It clearly is taken from this Maori gateway carving (Gauguin probably obtained a photo of it at the Auckland museum):



Interestingly, this is the statue that is featured in the movie version of "The Moon and the Sixpence", on Strickland's (Gauguin's) table in Paris, and at the end of the film, engulfed in flames.



I really love Gauguin's CARVINGS, which though again never full-fledged Tikis, are THE first Western interpretations of Polynesian sculpture:







[ This Message was edited by: bigbrotiki 2009-03-18 15:06 ]


 
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Zeta
Grand Member (2 years)  

Joined: Feb 13, 2007
Posts: 2049
From: Atlantis/Basque Country/Spain/Mexico
Posted: 2009-03-18 9:57 pm   Permalink

At first, I didn't liked it, but now I like it a lot. Like beer.
Gauguin was a cool guy... a sophisticated savage, a protobeatnik, a rebel and an escapist... This is the kind of art that you enjoy much more after reading about the artist's life... Anyone ever felt like Running away to an exotic island? He did it a hundred years ago...
I guess this is where he was buried...

before they moved him to his museum so thousands of tourists can visit his tomb... I am convinced he would not like that... That is what he was escaping from! Oh, well...
There are many "myths" about monsieur Paul Gauguin... One is that he died in absolute poverty... Which they say, is not true, He had some money from a painting that he had recently sold in a descent price. (his agent in Paris probably lied about the real price at which Gauguin's paintings where selling for and kept most of the money from the sold paintings.) Also, in his hut, they found a lot of cases with brand new bottles of absinthe .

Great pictures everyone!



 
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Zeta
Grand Member (2 years)  

Joined: Feb 13, 2007
Posts: 2049
From: Atlantis/Basque Country/Spain/Mexico
Posted: 2009-03-23 9:01 pm   Permalink

The Gauguin Tiki...

The description under the picture is funny...


 
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