Impressionism in the Albertina

While there are many fine museums to be explored in Vienna, if you are a fan of the paintings of the Impressionists, then you will want to go to the Albertina across from the Mozart cafe and the Opera House in central Vienna. Here’s what you are looking for…..

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The museum is perhaps most famous for the most famous of all modern Austrian paintings— Gustav Klimmt’s The Kiss…..
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But it is the permanent loan exhibit of a private collection of Impressionist art (and Cubist and modern art) that is the other big drawing card here…..
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Here is the story of how the collection came to be here, housed in an annex to a royal residence!
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While the collection is a small one, which can be contained in four rather small rooms, it is of high quality, involving Renoir, Monet, Toulouse-Latrec, Sisley, Cezanne, early Picasso, and some of the German Impressionists (yes there were a few). We will start with a famous Renoir…
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Renoir (1841-1919) earned his crust of bread by portrait painting, and he was the most sought after of portrait painters in the 1870s in Paris. This painting is of six year old Elizabeth Maitre (who lived until 1960), the daughter of a friend. Using pastels, Renoir sought to bring an intimate feel to this close up portrait.

One of the bigger paintings in the collection is Monet’s famous one of the water lily pond, seen here, and note the explanation below….
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If one knows the work of Toulouse-Latrec, one probably knows his famous posters or cartoons, but here is a more traditional painting of a white horse, with description below.
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Here is another interesting Monet, deliberately using distortion to suggest a hot simmering summer day.
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I’m willing to bet you’ve not heard of the German Impressionist, Max Pechstein but he deserves to be known. Here is a very nice painting of irises by him.
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Another German artist, who got himself in hot water with the Nazis was Emil Nolde. Here is a large painting of flowers, done in the Impressionist style.
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One of the nice surprises in this museum were several artists I had not studied or heard of before, such as Alexej Jawlensky (1864-1941). Check this painting out of a corn field near Carantec.
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Paul Signac (1863-1935) is another Impressionist that I did not know, and here we have a painting of Venetzia (Venice).
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Here is a nice painting by Cezanne of a farm in Normandy…
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Here is a painting by Sisley, not my favorite, but still an interesting scene by a river…..
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Here is another typical Monet
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Yet another artist with whom I was unfamiliar is Henri Lebasque (1865-1937). This lovely painting is entitled Young Girls in a Mediterranean Landscape. albt26

We will do at least one more post on the Albertina, but here is a painting that augurs a change in direction in the early 20th century. The artist is clearly influenced by the Impressionists, but he is moving in a fresh, and in some ways less pastel-colored direction….
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