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“The life I live is literally the opposite of the life I dreamed of. I love seclusion, silence, cultivated thinking and reasoned action—and I have to
deal with machinations, foolish talk and vain affectation.” Vallotton
Swiss painter and printmaker associated with Les Nabis. An important figure in the development of the modern woodcut. (Wikipedia)
"Felix Vallotton is special. He had not one distinct style of his own; he had many. Vallotton was influenced by Art Deco, Symbolism, Japanese prints and much more, and he could adapt his work to them at will. Different styles may even coexist in the same painting.
Vallotton's experimentations with photography are particularly fascinating. He often used photographs found in magazines or taken by himself with his Kodak camera... [The struggle between art & photography begun] in the mid-19th century is still evident in Vallotton's works of 50 years later. Sometimes he painted photo-realistically, and other times he exaggerated details—forms, colors—to make an image less "real", and thus more meaningful—more artistic (accuracy can mean more than realistic depiction). Willingly naïve/cartoon-like (Bathing in Étretat, 1899), (pre-) Impressionism à la Dégas (On the Beach, 1899) or realistic portrait (decorative portrait of Émile Zola, 1901)... The transfer from photo to canvas can transform a motif in many different ways. ... Vallotton's (self)portraits are mostly realist and always lifelike (Self Portrait at the Age of Twenty, 1885; Gertrude Stein, 1907; Félix Jasinsky Holding his Hat, 1887).
His landscapes are about color and atmosphere, rarely about nature (e.g. Sunset. Grey-Blue High Sea, 1911)." http://artlifemagazine.com/art-exhibitions/felix-vallotton-grand-palais-paris.htm#.VELBj-f3k7k
“Félix Vallotton’s art is imbued with a biting sarcasm and black humor that established him as an internationally acclaimed avant-garde artist of the modern period. His images are disturbing, revealing and captivating.” ~ Daniel Richter