Winter at Barbizon by Ion Andreescu

Winter at Barbizon by Ion Andreescu (1881)

 My Daily Art Display for today is a kind of  “first” as it is the first time that I have “showcased” a Romanian artist –  so see what you think of this offering.

Ion Andreescu was born in Bucharest in 1850.   He was the son of a brandy merchant and graduated from the Bucharest Art College.  In 1872 he became a teacher of drawing and calligraphy in a provincial grammar school in Buzau. 

He exhibited his first painting, a still life, entitled Gooseberries at in 1874 at the Exhibition of Living Artists, held in the Academy Halls of Bucharest University.    Andreescu’s paintings were noticed by one of the founders of modern Romanian paintings, Nicolae Grigorescu and he ibecame his mentor.  In 1879, having been awarded a travel scholarship to France, he set off for Paris where he spent two years at the Academie Julian in Paris.  He also attended the Barbizon school named after the village it was situated in, a short distance from the Fontainebleau Forest, a favourite spot where artists gathered.  His work was exhibited alongside the works of the great Impressionist painters Manet, Monet and Renoir.

Ion had been suffering from tuberculosis when he went to Paris and sadly a year after his return to his homeland he died of the disease in 1882 at the young age of 32.

Today’s oil on canvas painting is entitled Winter at Barbizon and was completed by Ion Andreescu in 1881.   His pictures depicting scenes of nature are notable for their rich green colours of the grass and foliage and the stunning blues of the skies.  However in this picture of the Barbizon village scene he has encaptured the winter setting with its nuanced whites, greys and light ochres.

I am always a little excited when I discover a “new” artist.  It makes me want to research into his or her life and search for more of their works of art.  I hope I have in some way stimulated your curiosity regarding Ion Andreescu.