Cézanne in Provence
January 29 – May 7, 2006
West Building, Main Floor, Galleries 72 through 79
THIS EXHIBITION IS NO LONGER ON VIEW AT THE NATIONAL GALLERY.
Overview: 86 paintings, 29 watercolors, and 2 lithographs by Paul Cézanne showing the landscape and people of Provence were on view in this exhibition, which was selected from the collection of the National Gallery of Art and public and private collections in Europe and North America. The presentation highlighted Provençal sites that Cézanne depicted, including the Cézanne family estate known as the Jas de Bouffan, the fishing village of L'Estaque and countryside hamlets of Gardanne and Bellevue, the isolated landscape of Bibémus, the Château Noir near Aix-en-Provence, and the distinctive bulk of Montagne Sainte-Victoire. A group of the artist's late landscapes and the monumental painting Large Bathers, on loan from the National Gallery, London, concluded the presentation. The exhibition marked the centenary of the artist's death. Exhibition hours were extended by two hours on May 6 and 7, the final weekend of the showing in Washington.
The Cézanne scholarship of art historian John Rewald was explored in a library display, A Scholar in Cézanne's Provence: The John Rewald Collections at the National Gallery of Art, drawn from the National Gallery of Art Library, Library Image Collections, and the Gallery Archives. Benedict Leca was the display curator.
An audio tour was narrated by National Gallery of Art director Earl A. Powell III and included commentary by exhibition curator Philip Conisbee and others. A public symposium, Cézanne's Provence, was held on May 6. The documentary film Cézanne in Provence premiered at the National Gallery of Art and was shown in the East Building Auditorium throughout the exhibition. French films from 1921 through 1998 focusing on themes and images of Provence and Marseille were shown during February. A Sunday concert on April 9 featured music by Claude Debussy and Gabriel Fauré. The Garden Café became Café Provençal and offered a special menu inspired by the cuisine of Provence in honor of the exhibition.
Organization: The exhibition was organized by the National Gallery of Art, Washington, the Musée Granet and the Communauté du Pays d'Aix, Aix-en-Provence, and the Réunion des musées nationaux, Paris. Philip Conisbee, senior curator of European paintings, National Gallery of Art, and Denis Coutagne, director of the Musée Granet, Aix-en-Provence, were curators.
Sponsor: The exhibition was made possible by the DaimlerChrysler Corporation Fund. It was supported by an indemnity from the Federal Council on the Arts and the Humanities.
Catalog: Cézanne in Provence, by Philip Conisbee and Denis Coutagne et al. Washington, D.C.: National Gallery of Art, in association with Yale University Press, New Haven and London, 2006.
Brochure: Cézanne in Provence, by Margaret Doyle. Washington, D.C.: National Gallery of Art, 2006.