The city of Marseille / Centre de la Vieille Charité
Réunion des Musées Nationaux
From the website of FranceGuide
Few today are aware that Monticelli’s paintings were one of Vincent’s first artistic discoveries upon arriving in Paris and that they would play a key role in his decision to travel to Provence in search of the light of the Midi that the painter from Marseilles rendered “in a full, orangey yellow full of sulphur”, according to Van Gogh. Van Gogh recognised in the work of the artist, known for his numerous paintings of “fêtes galantes”, the originality expressed in his treatment of familiar subjects: landscapes, flower arrangements, still lifes and portraits.
The exhibition proposes to show side by side subjects treated by both artists in order to highlight their vision of painting, their shared taste for texture and the primacy of feelings and emotion over design. We will perhaps be able to better understand why Van Gogh considered Monticelli a visionary, to the point of encouraging his brother Theo to purchase several of his works.