Cézanne and the Past. Tradition and Creativity

International Symposium

28 January 2013.

Museum of Fine Arts, Budapest, Baroque Hall

Click here to download the programme in pdf

This symposium, organised in the occasion of the Cézanne and the Past. Tradition and Creation exhibition will focus on different themes and issues that could not be dealt with in detail within the frame of the show and its catalogue (such as Cézanne and Antiquity, Cézanne and Courbet, etc.). The invited lecturers (all internationally renowned scholars) will examine different aspects of Cézanne’s relationship to the past from a new, original point of view.

The symposium will be chaired by Richard Shiff, professor at the University of Texas at Austin, who also participated to the exhibition catalogue with an article entitled Sensation, Cézanne. His book Cézanne and the End of Impressionism. A Study of the Theory, Technique, and Critical Evaluation of Modern Art, published in 1984, was one of the most influential studies on Cézanne of the last decades.

Faya Causey is head of the academic programs department at the National Gallery of Art, Washington, D.C. A specialist in ancient art, Causey is the author of many articles appearing in a variety of journal and catalogues. She will exmaine the influence of Antiquity (especially Greek and Roman sculpture) on the art of Cézanne. Causey studied the relationship between antique and modern art in her essay Jasper Johns: Ancient Aspects.

Matthew Simms, associate professor at California State University, Long Beach, will present a lecture entitled Cézanne, Drawing and the Past. Simms has worked extensively on nineteenth century French art and criticism. His research and writing on Paul Cézanne resulted in articles or reviews. His first book, entitled Cézanne’s Watercolors: Between Drawing and Painting was published by Yale University Press in 2008.

Mary Tompkins Lewis, professor at Hartford Trinity College, Connecticut contributed to the catalogue of the Cézanne and the Past exhibition with an essay on „Cézanne and Louvre”. On the occasion of the symposium, she will examine the copies made by Cézanne after the so-called „Écorché”. The French artist copied this sculpture, traditionally attributed to Michelangelo, no less than twenty times in drawing, watercolour and oils.

André Dombrowski, Assistant Professor at the University of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia will discuss the topic Cézanne, Wagner and the Origin of Art. His dissertation, completed in 2006, focuses on Cézanne’s early works and many of his essays articles deal with the French artist. He is author of Cézanne, Murder, and Modern Life (University of California Press, December 2012)

Jean-Claude Lebensztejn parisian art historian and critic will present the circumstances of creation of Cézanne’s painting Female Nude (Léda II) (presently exhibited at the Museum of Fine Arts, Budapest). This lecture will provide an interesting complement to Lebensztejn’s analysis of Cézanne’s „Leda series”, published in his book Études Cézanniennes (2006), collecting his essays on the French master.

Denis Coutagne will study Cézanne and Courbet’s artistic relationship. As the former director of musée Granet in Aix-en-Provence and being the president of the Paul Cézanne Society, Coutagne participated to the preparation of several exhibitions on Cézanne. In 2006, Coutagne was co-curator of the Cézanne in Provence exhibition showed in Aix and Wahington. In 2011, he was member of the Scientific committee of the exhibition Cézanne and Paris (musée du Luxembourg, Paris).

The Symposium will end with András Rényi’s lecture focusing on the copies by Cézanne after Caravaggio’s Entombment. András Rényi is head of the Institute for Art History at Faculty of Humanities, Eötvös University (ELTE), Budapest. He studied Caravaggio’s masterpiece in an article published in 2001: A holtpont igézete. Adalékok Caravaggio testfelfogásához és „naturalizmusának” képi szintaxisához (Enigma, 2001, 30 sz).

The conference will be held in English and French (Simultaneous interpretation from French to Hungarian will be provided). The conference is free of charge. The exhibition Cézanne and the Past. Tradition and Creation will be open on Monday from 10.00 to 17.30.