Art: Joaquin Sorolla Painting gives me immense pleasure
Originally little known in Italy, he was nevertheless one of the most prolific and valued Spanish impressionists. He carried out a good four thousand paintings on canvass and about eight thousand drawings many of which were produced on order and sold anyway in the course of many of his international exhibits and more so in the USA where he was vastly appreciated. He was born in 1863 in Valencia but did not live very long a mere sixty years till 1923. His first works go back to 1880. His first success comes at the National Exhibition in 1884 where he exhibited something made specially for the event.the title is Defensa del Parque de Artilleria de Monteléon, a decidedly gloomy representation about which he commented “To get yourself known here and win a medal you must paint the dead”. That was no vocational spirit but treasuring what he had learned from observing Diego Velasquez’s works, a year later in Paris he manages to grasp the importance, the role light and colour play in painting, when visiting Bastien Le Page and Adolf Menzel’s works. Most certainly his most determining encounter in his life was when he met Antonio Garcia, a famed photographer, and father to a friend and fellow student of his at the Ecole des Beaux Arts. Garcia takes him on as light technician in his photographer’s studio. Sorolla falls in love with his benefactor’s third daughter named Clotilde, with whom they found a wonderful family which for Sorolla, becomes together with his passion for painting, the raison d’etre of his life.to quote one of his favourite aphorisms “painting is a vital function just as much as breathing is” “you can be happy only if you’re a painter”. Well he travels a great deal across Europe and exhibits his works at national and international events and contests with Clotilde’s help. He’s successful and wins numerous national and international awards from Valencia to Madrid, Rome , Assisi, Paris, London, Germany and the USA. Often, when forced to stay away from his family due to his commitments, he would send his wife bunches of flowers and letters, “What you’re feeling and witnessing is an everlasting loving renewal of our reciprocal affection, and not the flowers per se, but a kind of sublimed betrothal”. Seeing and visualising beauty in tangible things are for him something mentally captivating as well, for all that is created, and is the result
“La playa de Valencia” “Pescadora con su hijo”
Light marks the rhythm of our lives and causes natural phenomena which is extremely beautiful. De facto, the art of painting would not exist without it. Joachim Sorolla has successfully managed to seize it in masterly fashion. He’s shaped intense light, in contrasting hues of diverse colours, still lives, landscapes, and portraits impeccably.