Our Richmond visit timed perfectly with the VMFA exhibit of Van Gogh, Manet, and Matisse: the art of the Flower. How perfect was that!
This exhibition is the first major American exhibition to consider the French floral still life across the 19th century.
The exhibition explores the infusion of new spirit and meaning into the traditional genre of floral still-life painting in 19th-century France, even as the advent of modernism was radically transforming the art world. It features more than 60 flower paintings by more than 30 artists, including well-known painters such as Eugène Delacroix, Gustave Courbet, Henri Fantin-Latour, Édouard Manet, Vincent van Gogh, and Henri Matisse, as well as less familiar figures such as Antoine Berjon and Simon Saint-Jean. These artists, whose careers collectively span the nineteenth century, engaged in a sophisticated reworking of traditional imagery, bringing the floral still life into dialogue with emerging models of science and commerce, and ultimately transforming the genre into a meditation on the nature of artistic representation itself.
Do the entire audio tour here.
I also loved the grounds outside the museum, the water lilies were in bloom and the Siberian water irises set off by the Chihuly art.