Wednesday, August 30, 2017

French Kisses, an homage to Robert Doisneau

16 x 12", acrylic on gessoed birch panel
painting #247, 2017 

I initially got this large Hershey's Kisses for my wife while picking up a Valentine's Day card at the store. When I got home, I opened the box and marvelled at it like an "Objet de désire". I decided to put it in my prop box for a future painting and ended up getting her a heart box of Russell Stover chocolates instead. 

The title inspired the narrative for this painting. The composition came to me when I uncovered this 1993 Robert Doisneau calendar that had been stored away some 23 years ago. Since my wife Suzanne and I were married on February 14, I arranged the pages so that "Baiser de l'Hôtel de Ville"(Kiss at Town Hall), was on the appropriate month. 

Robert Doisneau (1912-1994) was a French photographer who became reknown for his street photography and as a photojournalist. "Baiser de l'Hôtel de ville" first appeared in LIFE magazine on June 12, 1950. The couple kissing in the photo was only made public in 1992 and identified as Françoise Delbart, 20, and Jacques Carteaud, 23, both aspiring actors at the time. The story behind "Baiser de l'Hôtel de Ville" is well documented on his Wikipedia page - click HERE

During our six week vacation in Europe this spring, we were fortunate enough to attend "Bistro, de Baudelaire à Picasso", the inaugural artistic exhibition held at La Cité du Vin in Bordeaux, France. The exhibit was comprised of about 100 works that included paintings, photography, drawings, literature and cinema. Dating from the 18th century to today, the show explored how artists from various movements were influenced by Café bars. A full wall was dedicated to the amazing photography of Robert Doisneau.

Earlier this year I was invited by Galerie de Bellefeuille in Montreal to submit some artwork for a Photorealism group exhibition. I am delighted to announced that two paintings were selected for this prestigious show that will run from September 30 - October 10, 2017. 

Participating artists: 
-Roberto Bernardi
-Jason DeGraaf
-Shaun Downey
-Stephen Fox
-Judy Garfin
-David Ligare
-Yigal Ozeri
-Barbara Pratt
-Juan Pujol
-Alvin Richard
-Janet Rickus
-Glen Semple
-Steve Smulka
-Paula Urzica
-Andrew Valko
-Francine Van Hove
-Jason Walker

-Gordon Young

Galerie de Bellefeuille
1367 avenue Greene
Montreal, Quebec H3Z 2A8
Tel: 514.933.4406