MASTERPIECES FROM THE RIJKSMUSEUM

November 27, 2017

IMG_9014

The first major exhibition of Dutch masters in Sydney, featuring 78 exceptional works of art from Amsterdam’s Rijksmuseum, including a room dedicated to Rembrandt, is on display at the Art Gallery of New South Wales.

Rembrandt and the Dutch Golden Age showcases Dutch art and life during the 17th century, an era of wealth, power and cultural confidence. Dutch artists only began to depict distinctively Dutch landscapes in the 17th century, inspired by their unique environment with its terrain, windmills and abundant waterways. Scenes of everyday life, especially those set in the home, were incredibly popular during this time, with works portraying feasting and drinking with family and friends, children being cared for and people simply reading or sitting in quiet contemplation. The sea has always been a dominant factor in Dutch history, shaping the country’s life and commerce and during the Golden Age, marine painting emerged as another area in which Dutch painters excelled.

JOLLY DRINKER.jpg

Landscapes, townscapes, architecture and interior scenes as well as marine scenes were the subjects of many of the era’s paintings. The Dutch Republic gave rise to a huge number of talented painters, but while most specialised in a single genre, such as portraiture, still life or landscape, Rembrandt painted almost everything.

Exhibition curator, Peter Raissis, said Vermeer’s “Woman Reading A Letter” (1663) and one of Rembrandt’s greatest works, “Self-portrait as the Apostle Paul” (1661), are at the heart of Sydney’s exhibition and are viewed by hundreds of thousands of visitors each year in the Rijksmuseum’s famed Gallery of Honour.

REMBRANDT.jpg

Alongside masterpieces by Vermeer and Rembrandt, where an entire room is dedicated with seven of his paintings and 16 etchings, are outstanding paintings by Jacob van Ruisdael, regarded as the greatest landscapist of the Golden Age and Jan Davidsz de Heem, renowned for his dynamic, colourful compositions of flowers and Judith Leyster’s painting of “The Jolly Drinker”.

It was customary for the affluent Dutch middle class to have themselves portrayed in paintings, whereas, in most European countries this was a privilege reserved for nobles and aristocrats. The exhibition’s portraits of merchants, scholars and artists reflect the increasing self-confidence and prosperity of the Golden Age’s society.

IMG_9062.jpg

During the exhibition, a variety of educational programs are available for visitors of all ages. The Gallery will host a lecture series featuring local and international experts, late night programs, music, daily guided tours and many other events to give visitors the opportunity to enjoy interactions with the artworks.

The exhibition runs until 18 February 2018.

Words: Sandra Tiltman Photos: John Pond

Advertisements

BLOODY MURDER

November 10, 2017

The Genesian Theatre’s current production of “Bloody Murder” is a very entertaining combination of comedy and murder mystery. Written by Ed Sala, this play will have the audience guessing “who dunnit” right from the start.

Lady Somerset has invited six guests to her isolated country estate and when one is murdered, just before revealing a dark secret, she refuses to let her party be interrupted, even by the police. The action heightens when the murderer strikes again and the remaining guests come to the realisation that they must work together to find out who is actually making the choice of who will live and who will die.

Directed by Michael Heming, this play is unlike any ordinary murder mystery, as it has the audience laughing right from the first victim. The acting skills of the excellent cast keep the audience on the edge of their seats while they look for clues and try to find answers

“Bloody Murder” is currently playing at the Genesian Theatre, 420 Kent Street, Sydney until 2 December 2017. Friday & Saturday nights at 7.30pm with a Sunday matinée at 4.30pm.

Sandra Tiltman


THE CROWN, SEASON 1 ON DVD and BLU-RAY

November 8, 2017

Sandra T. with Royal Friend

Royal watchers and history buffs are in for a treat with The Crown, Season 1 due for release on 15 November 2017, just in time for Christmas. The Blu-rayTM, DVD and Premium Collector’s Edition DVD will make wonderful presents for friends and family or why not buy one for your own enjoyment.

Claire Foy is brilliant as the 25 year old newlywed Queen Elizabeth II, bringing to life the era when the British Empire was in decline and the political world in disarray. A new era dawns when Queen Elizabeth II takes the throne, facing the daunting prospect of leading the world’s most famous monarchy while forging a relationship with legendary Prime Minister, Sir Winston Churchill, played by John Lithgow.

Created by Peter Morgan, The Crown, with its opulent sets and ornate costumes, explores the Queen’s private journey behind the public facade with daring frankness. A winner of Emmys and Golden Globe awards, The Crown, is both an exceptional and lavish account of Queen Elizabeth II’s rise to the throne.

Sandra Tiltman

#TheCrownAU,    @ViewingLounge