Tuesday, November 26, 2013

I Love Still Life - 2

                Continuing my story of still life, I want to tell you about my favorite paintings of 19-21 centuries, ie since impressionists to modern artists. Many of you know or have heard of the Impressionists, French artists of the 19th century. I learned their works in the halls of Hermitage Museum many years ago. Of course there are Still lifes by Cézanne, Renoir, Van Gogh and others.
To begin with I would like to show you a still life paintings by Claude Monet and Edouard Manet. 

  Edouard Manet "Rose and cake"   and " Two roses" 

  Edouard Manet "Roses" and "Clematis"

Claude Monet  "Christmas roses" and  "Chrysanthemums"

Claude Monet  "Vase of tulips" and "Vase of peonies"

Both artists have worked in the Impressionist style, which can be defined as a desire to connect still life with the environment, nature. The Impressionists abandoned complex of colorful tones, they were painting clean colors, achieving mixing these colors directly on the canvas, created the illusion depicting colored shadows. Here are paintings by Cézanne, Renoir, Van Gog.

Cézanne "Fruit and flowers" and  Auguste Renoir "Still Life"

 Vincent Van Gog "Sunflowers" and "Irises"

I've  chosen to you a few works by Russian artists of 19-20th centuries, and contemporaries as well. Isaak Levitan is one of the most well-known Russian artists began to paint his still lifes in 1880. I show you his modest painting, where he depicted simple bouquets of Cornflowers. Another artist Ivan Kramskoy was Levitan's contemporary. He is known as the author of large canvases, here is his still life "Phlox".

Isaak Levitan "Cornflowers" and Ivan Kramskoy "Phlox"

The artists Igor Grabar and Dmitry Nalbandian created their paintings in 30-50th of the last century. I like their still lifes, simple and at the same time elegant.
Vladimir Volosov and Vladimir Korkodym are our contemporaries, their works are made at the beginning of our century. I think "Country Still life" is especially lovely, it reminds me of my walks in the woods, picking berries and flowers.

Dmitry Nalbandian  "Wild flowers" and Vladimir Korkodym " Flowers"

Igor Grabar "Roses on a Window" and Vladimir Volosov "Country Still life"

Did you like these Still lifes I selected to you? Whom of artists did you know and love? Thank you! 

It's all for today. Happy coming Thanksgiving!

* all photos from internet, click to see bigger.

Saturday, November 16, 2013

GBBD In November

               Who would have thought that mid-November was so warm: +10... +5 C (50...40F)? Usually there is snow in the middle of November in my garden. I wrote in the previous post about my 'to do' plan before winter comes. But apparently I hurried: winter is not yet here:)).
What flowers can be seen in Garden Blog Day in November? I had a gift pot of Chrysantemums, it grows in my garden warm verandah, is blooming very well. Potentilla has one lonely flower, it's blooming near the fence. 

Already leaves have fallen from all shrubs. Sedum grows near the large thuja; when I had cleaned dry leaves, I noticed its young sprouts. How they will survive in the snow, probably will die. Deciduous rhododendrons are quite bare and their flower buds are now clearly visible. This is the variety 'Mandarin light'. 

I have covered with boxes and special material "spunbond" my roses. The boxes stand nondensely on the ground, I put the stones and bricks at the corners to the air comes to the rose bushes. The small rose I have grown out of the cutting, I will cover it with a cloth, too. Tulips are tightly covered with leaves and I hope bulbs will winter well. 

Honeysuckle Perfoliate has not yet dropped its leaves, I have put a chair and decided to sit watching the birds as they managed with a new bottle-feeder. I filled in the bottle sunflower seeds. Some titmice immediately understood how to get the seeds while still others birds looked narrowly at them.

Do you have feeders for birds in your garden? 
What kind of birds do you see there? Thank you!  

That's all for now, have a nice weekend!

Monday, November 11, 2013

I Love Still Life

           I love the Old Masters' Still life. Why? When I look at the Still life paintings I think the artists tried to create a sense of nature. Fruit, vegetables, flowers, food comes alive under the Old Masters' brush. I imagine the people who cut these flowers, ate this food, fruit, used these dishes, glasses, cups, table cloths, curtain, etc.. 
Look at the 'Flower Still life' by Franz Xaver Petter and the 'Still Life, Flowers and Fruit' by Severin Roesen. There are many flowers and fruit that are piled on the table, in dishes and baskets. I love those tender colors of roses, bright irises and daffodils.

Franz Xaver Petter, 'Flower Still life', 1821

Severin Roesen , 'Still life, Flowers and Fruit', 1850

The artist Frans Snyders is wellknown as the collection of his works in Hermitage museum, Saint Petersburg. I've chosen his 'Fruit in a Bowl on a Red Cloth' and the 'Fruit Stall' to show you. There are many heavy ripe juicy fruit: pears, peaches, grape, plums, nuts, blackberry, figs in the Snyders's paintings. The fruit are everywhere: on a table, in dishes, bowls, all types of baskets, and even just on the floor, filling baskets, buckets, pails. When having seen them many years ago I was surprised by luxury, bright colors and abundance.

  Frans Snyders 'Fruit in a Bowl on a Red Cloth', 1620
Frans Snyders  'Fruit Stall', 1615

I've recently learned 'Still life' by Ivan Khrutsky and Antonio de Pereda and I liked their works. What the wonderful flowers, vases, cups and bureau! 

 Ivan Khrutsky 'Still life', 1854

Antonio de Pereda 'Still life with an ebony chest', 1652
Here are works 'Still-Life with Fruit and Flowers' by Tomas Hiepes and 'Still-Life on a Table with Fruit and Flowers' by Jan van Kessel. If you look attentively at the fruit you will see that they represent different countries and ripen at different times of the year.

 Tomas Hiepes 'Still-Life with Fruit and Flowers', 1642

Jan van Kessel 'Still-Life on a Table with Fruit and Flowers',1650

The Still life by Clara Peeters was an discovery to me some years ago. She painted many Still life and I want to show you two of them: 'Still life with a tart, roast chicken, bread, rice and olives' and 'Still life with Cheeses, Almonds and Pretzels'. Food is so natural that I'd like to try these bread, cheese, tart and wine! 

  Clara Peeters 'Still life with a tart, roast chicken, bread, rice and olives', 1635

 Clara Peeters 'Still life with Cheeses, Almonds and Pretzels', 1640
I agree with specialists who say that Still life became an independent genre of painting thanks to many painters and especially to Snyders .

What do you think about Still life? Who of Old Masters do you prefer?

Have a nice week all!

Monday, November 4, 2013

Storing and Forcing Bulbs

             Now there is no work in the garden, I decided to put the gladioli bulbs in storage until spring. I have a bit of gladioli, and I grow them in containers and large pots. Before digging I cut their roots and foliage with a secateurs, shaken the soil, gently teared off the old bulb, trying not to damage the new one and rinsed them under running water from mud.
Then I laid them out in boxes and dried them in the room at +25 ... 30 C for about 1 month, then peeled and assorted gladioli. Usually I fully clean bulb to determine healthy or sick it is. 


Gladioli can be stored, placing them in boxes or pouches in the lower box of refrigerator, near a balcony door, on a window sill. I wrapped bulbs in newspaper and store in a box, in a cool place where the temperature is about +10 C. 

During the winter, I regularly look at them and throw away the diseased ones. The bulbs that I treated with 'Viridis nitentis', I keep separately from the healthy ones.

Often in spring, I see the sprouts appeared well before planting time. Then I lay out gladioli in a bright place and subsequently plant them out in small pots. So I have an early seedling of gladioli, and plant them in June already with large leaves.

In September I also set aside a few tulip bulbs for wintery forcing in water. I chose a variety of 'Red Georgette', these multifloral tulips have 3 flower stalks from one bulb. Now, these bulbs are wrapped in paper and lie in the vegetable box in my refrigerator until the end of December at temperature of + 9 C. Recently I looked at them, they were a little wet and I changed the paper. 

How will bulb forcing go? I promise to tell and show you.
And will you do forcing bulbs? What kind of bulbs are they?

photo from internet

That's all for now, have a nice week!