The exhibition Cézanne a Firenze
, until the 29th July at the Palazzo Strozzi, presents more than 100 masterpieces, aiming at celebrating both the enigmatic genius of Paul Cézanne in the centenary of his death and the extraordinary intellectual experience of two young American collectors, Egisto Paolo Fabbri and Charles Alexander Loeser. Between the 19th and 20th centuries, they collected about 50 paintings by the master from Aix, hence greatly contributing to the success of a lone experimenter and genius, disregarded during his lifetime by the most important critics, but today recognised and worshipped as “the father of modern painting”.
Cézanne Madame Cézanne on a Red Armchair, c. 1877., oil on canvas, cm. 72,4 x 55,9, Bequest of Robert Treat Paine, 2nd, Boston Museum of Fine Arts
The unique peculiarity of the exhibition Cézanne a Firenze
lies in having gathered together for the first time the most noteworthy works of the Fabbri’s and Loeser’s collections that, before being scattered in the years between the two world wars, were the most important in the world. Totally contrary to the aesthetic tastes of the time, and even to the surprise of the artist himself, Fabbri actually came to own 32 paintings by Cézanne while Loeser 15. These collections contributed to making Cézanne appreciated by the international community and encouraged the artistic milieu of Florence towards avant-garde trends.
Henri Matisse, Purple Beeches, 1901, oil on canvas, cm. 37,5 x 46, National Museum in Belgrade.
More than twenty Cézannes are displayed in the exhibition, among which the famous Madame Cézanne in a Red Armchair, House on the Marne
(a unique loan from the White House), The Orchard, The Bathers and the Feast in the House of Simon the Pharisee
, a copy of the work by Paolo Veronese bearing the same name, which he painted in his early period. Cézanne’s copy had been missing since 1945 and has now been found by the curator. Around this core of works there are numerous paintings by Pissarro, Van Gogh, Matisse, Sargent, Denis, Cassatt, Weir, La Farge, all European and American artists with whom especially Fabbri was in contact. The presence of works by contemporary Italian artists is also an important point of reference: Fattori, Fabbri, Gordigiani, Soffici, Andreotti, Rosso, Ghiglia, Rosai, etc.
The paintings come from both public institutions and private collections: the White House, the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York, the Thyssen Bornemisza Collections, the National Gallery and the Royal Academy in London, the Hermitage Museum of St. Petersburg, the National Gallery of Art in Washington, the Detroit Institute of Arts and the Galleries of Modern Art in Florence and Rome, etc.
Cézanne a Firenze
Paul Cézanne, Self-Portrait in a Casquette, 1873-75., oil on canvas, cm. 53 x 38, St. Petersburg, The State Hermitage Museum.