Happy Birthday to Paul Gauguin!Every month we are celebrating an artist with a birthday and this month it is Paul Gauguin!
Paul Gauguin was a French Post-Impressionist painter, sculptor, printmaker, ceramist, and write, and was an important figure in the Symbolist movement. Underappreciated until after his death, Gauguin is now recognized for his experimental use of color and Synthetist style that were distinctly different from Impressionism. His work was influential to the French avant-garde and many modern artists, such as Pablo Picasso and Henri Matisse.
His most famous piece of art is pictured above, titled "Where Do We Come From? What Are We? Where Are We Going?", painted in 1897. This is Paul Gauguin's most famous painting, and he considered it his masterpiece, and the culmination of his thoughts. In Tahiti, as he was painting his masterpiece, Gauguin declared that he would commit suicide upon its completion. Although this was something he had previously attempted, this was not the case, as the artist died of syphilis in 1903. The painting was meant to be read from right to left, with the three main figures in the painting representing the three questions of the title. The figures are arranged from the beginning stages of life, from young figures with a child, to the middle aged figure in the middle, to the elder figure on the left of the painting. The idol in the background, situated behind the elder figure, represents the “Beyond.”
Let's raise a glass to the man whose bold experimentation of color led directly to the Synthetist style of modern art!