This show was organized by three museums, SDMA, Meadows Museums in Dallas Texas where it began and the Mapfre Foundation in Spain with the help of the great grand daughter of Sorolla Blanca (who co-wrote the catalog) and the Hispanic Society of America. Forty of the 150 works on display have not been seen in public before but that might not be too surprising as this prolific artist created more than 8000 works of art. Only works created, exhibited or sold in America are included and this is the largest show of his work since 1911.
I was privileged to see the works in advance of the show opening. The director of SDMA and the the curator of the show were happy to tell us many details about the work. But this is work that needs to be felt and not explained. I have added my selection but I encourage you to go and make your own selection and to see this artist not in the context of Spain but as a world traveler who was immensely popular in his own time. Only time will tell if he what place he takes in history, but SDMA will certainly aid in giving him a higher profile in the here and now.
The show will be on view until August 26, 2014. Check the website for a listing of workshops and lectures.
Sorolla y Bastida. María at La Granja, 1907. Oil on canvas. The San
Diego Museum of Art, gift of Mr. Archer M. Huntington in memory of his
mother, Arabella D. Huntington, 1925.001.|
This is the first work donated to SDMA in 1925 by Archer Huntington, one of the largest patrons of the artist.
|Joaquín Sorolla y Bastida. Running Along the Beach, 1908. Oil on canvas. Museo de Bellas Artes de Asturias, Colección Masaveu, which is followed below by a sketch for the work...the series of sketches just found to belong with the work in oil.|
|Joaquín Sorolla y Bastida. Playing on the Beach, 1908. Charcoal and chalk on paper. Private Collection. Photo by Joaquín Cortés.|
|I choose this seemly simple landscape as the glorious red flowers just leap off the page. Another instance of what the eye has to see in person to fully appreciate the work|
|The final portrait of a young lady adjusting her bathing costume with its hints of skin under the wet silk is my nod to a future exhibition at SDMA which will be a European dip into desire.|