Chalks, Pastels, Pen and Inks, 1475-2014

A few drawings in chalk, pen and ink and pastels.

 

In the light which these drawings transmit, especially noticeable in the darkened rooms where hang the Degas pastels at the Met in New York,  you can see the quiet in which they were created.  Almost you can hear the rub of chalk or pastel on paper. 

These works are mostly about secular themes. 

However, so luminous are they, so assured, ambitious and unpretentious – because they are small in size and the media used do not allow loud self-promotion,  that they enter your mind and stay there in their own room, lit up, with their original quiet.

They are like oases in full sun.   Or like chapels in cathedrals, dark and close like the Degas rooms.

Every time they come to memory, they allow retreat to an extraordinary quiet from the noise and confusion of an ordinary life.

 

 

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A page, 1485-1505 and after 1524, from the folio, Book of Drawings’ assembled by Giorgio Vasari (1511-1574).  Various media with surrounding decoration in pen and ink and wash.

This page bears drawings by Filippino Lippi (1437-1504), Botticelli (1446-1510) and Raffaelino del Garbo (1446-1527).  National Gallery of Art, Washington, DC

 

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Grotesque Head of an Old Woman, 1489/90, pen and ink.  Leonardo da Vinci, 1452-1519.  National Gallery of Art, Washington, DC

 

 

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Male Nude with a Lion, c. 1500, pen and brown ink.  Albrecht Durer, German, 1471-1528, German.  National Galley of Art, Washington, DC

 

 

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Eight Apostles, c.1514, chalk over stylus underdrawing with leadpoint on paper.  Raphael, 1483-1520, Italian.  National Gallery of Art, Washington, DC

John, the youngest of the apostles, I thought, he whom Jesus was said to have loved when I saw the drawing of the young man who is looking around and back, curious, lively and somewhat undisciplined like any teenager.

 

 

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Head of St. John the Baptist, c. 1523, chalk.  Andrea Del Sarto, 1486-1530, Italian.  National Gallery of Art, Washington, DC

 

 

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Portrait of a Noblewoman, 1590-1592, chalks with stumping heightened with white.  François Quesnel, 1543-1619, French.  National Gallery of Art, Washington, DC

 

 

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Without Ceres and Bacchus, Venus would freeze (love needs food and wine to thrive), and detail, 16001603, ink made with a burin. Hendrix Goltzius 15581617, Germanborn Dutch. Philadelphia Art Museum

 

 

Head of a Bearded Man, 1715, Benedetto Lutti, PMA-1

Head of a Bearded Man, 1715. Pastel with black chalk on blue laid paper. Benedetto Luti, born Florence 1666, died Rome 1724.  Philadelphia Musuem of Art

 

 

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Head of a Young Man in Profile, 1743, chalk on blue paper. Giovanni Battista Tiepolo, 1696-1770, Italian.  National Gallery of Art, Washington, DC

 

 

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Portrait of a Man, 1757, pastel on blue paper mounted on board.  Jean-Baptiste Perronneau, 1715-1783, French.  National Gallery of Art, Washington, DC

 

 

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Male Nude Leaning on a Pedestal, 1765, black and white chalks on laid paper prepared with blue ground.  Pompeio Girolamo Batoni, 1708-1787, Italian.  Philadelphia Art Museum

 

 

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Great Indian Fruit Bat, and details, 1777-82, pencil, ink and opaque watercolour on paper.  Attributed to Bhawani Das or a follower.  Calcutta, India.  Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York

 

For Mukul Chand whose blog, Enchanted Forests with its Posts of Happiness, has taken us all over India with his immense enthusiasm for his native country.  With thanks and hope that we will be able to voyage with him soon again.

 

 

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Pen Box, Iran, Quajar Period, 1775-1925, papier-mâché, painted, gilded and lacquered.  Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York

DSC00083_edited-1Armida gazes on the sleeping Rinaldo, c. 1785, coloured chalks on laid paper.  Giuseppe Cades, 1750-1799, Italian.  Philadelphia Museum of Art 

 

 

 

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Self-Portrait, 1855, chalk.  Edgar Degas, 1834-1917, French.  National Gallery of Art, Washington, DC

 

 

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Portraits at the Stock Exchange, 1878-’79, pastel on paper, pieced and laid down on canvas.  Edgar Degas, 1834-1917; French.  Metropolitan Museum of Art, NY  

This is a preparation for an oil painting depicting the financier and art collector, Ernest May.

 

 

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At the Milliner’s, 1882, pastel on pale grey wove paper (industrial wrapping paper) laid down on silk bolting.  Edgar Degas, 1834-1917, French.  Metropolitan Museum of Art, NY

 

 

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The Milliner, c. 1884, pastel on warm gray wove paper laid down on dark brown wove paper.  Edgar Degas, 1834-1917, French.  Metropolitan Museum of Art, NY

 

 

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Woman Drying Her Foot, 1885-86, pastel on buff wove paper affixed to pulpboard mount.  Edgar Degas, 1834-1917, French.  Metropolitan Museum of Art, NY

 

 

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Woman with a Towel, 1894-98; pastel on cream-coloured wove paper with red and blue fibers throughout.  Edgar Degas, 1834-1917, French.  Metropolitan Museum of Art, NY

 

 

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Bather Stepping Into a Tub, 1890; pastel and charcoal on blue laid paper mounted at perimeter on backing board.  Edgar Degas, 1834-1917, French.  Metropolitan Museum of Art, NY

One of seven in which the artist depicted women getting in and out of a tub.

 

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Woman Bathing in a Shallow Tub, charcoal and pastel on wove paper originally light green laid down on silk bolting., 1885.  

The entire suite of women bathing was presented at the final Impressionist exhibition of 1886 and widely attacked for what was considered to be the ungainly poses of the women in the drawings.   Edgar Degas, 1834-1917, French.  Metropolitan Museum of Art, NY

 

 

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Woman Combing Her Hair and detail, 1888-90, pastel on wove paper originally green affixed to pulpboard mount.   Edgar Degas, 1834-1917, French.  Metropolitan Museum of Art, NY

 

 

 

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Three Jockeys, 1900, pastel on tracing paper laid down on board.  Edgar Degas, 1834-1917, French.  Metropolitan Museum of Art, NY

 

 

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The Singer in Green, 1884, pastel on light blue laid paper.  Edgar Degas, 1834-1917, French.  Metropolitan Museum of Art, NY

 

 

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Dancers in Green and Yellow, and details, 1903, pastel and charcoal on several pieces of tracing paper on paperboard.  Edgar Degas, 1834-1917, French.  Thannhauser Collection,  Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum, New York 

 

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Apple Blossom, 1878, pencil, charcoal and pastel on paper, a study prepared by Frederic Shields (1833-1911, British)  for Dante Gabriel Rosetti’s  (1828-1882, British) painting A Vision of Fiametta.  Delaware Art Museum, Wilmington

 

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The Zouave, mid-1888, reed and quill pen and ink over graphite on paper.  Vincent Van Gogh, 1853-1890, Dutch.  Founding Collection, Samuel R. Guggenheim Museum, New York

 

 

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The Black Hat, c. 1890, pastel.  Mary Cassatt, 1844-1926, American.  National Gallery of Art, Washington DC (Collection of Paul Mellon)

 

 

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Madame Arthur Fontaine (Marie Escudier, born 1865), 1901, pastel on paper. Odile Redon, 1840-1916,  Metropolitan Museum of Art, NY

 

 

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Head of a Woman, 1903, pastel.  Pablo Picasso, 1881-1973, Spanish.  National Gallery of Art, Washington, DC

 

 

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Three Bathers, 1920, pastel, oil, ink and graphite on paper.  Pablo Picasso, 1881-1973, Spanish.  Founding Collection, Solomon R. Guggenheim Collection, New York

 

 

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Flower Seller, 1916, pastel on paper on canvas.  Alfredo Ramos Martinez, 1871-1946, Mexican.  On display in the Philadelphia Art Museum in 2016

 

 

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Peasants, 1913, pastel on paper.  David Alfaro Sequeiros, 1896-1974, Mexican.  On display in the Philadelphia Art Museum in 2016

 

 

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Café Billard, 1916, pen and ink.  George Grosz, German.  Promised gift of Dian Woodner to the National Gallery of Art, Washington DC

 

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Self-Portrait, 1937-38, pencil, oil and crayon on canvas.  Joan Miro, 1893-1983, Spanish. MOMA, NY

 

 

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Peter, pen and ink, 1971.  David Hockney, British born 1937.  Promised gift to the National Gallery of Art, Washington, DC

 

 

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Conversation in a Garden, late 1960’s, ink on paper.  Eileen Goodman, born 1937, American.  Exhibited at the Woodmere Museum, Philadelphia in 2016

 

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Study for Political Prisoner, 1987-88, charcoal and pastel on heavy wove paper.  Sidney Goodman, 1936-2013, American.  Pennsylvania Academy of Fine Arts, Philadelphia

 

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Calm, 2014, pastel on paper.  Lesa Chittendem Lem, American.  On display at the Woodmere Museum, Philadelphia in 2017

 

 

All works shown for the National Gallery of Art, Washington, DC are in the Woodner Collection of that museum except Mary Cassatt’s Black Hat.

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