Fouquet/Kandinsky - Smart Secrets of Great Paintings

Event Type Art à la Carte , Adults, Teens, Free Programs
Date calendar  Wednesday, May 24, 2023
Time clock  12:15pm - 1:15pm (1h)
Location Isabel Hall

Art à la Carte is a series of informative programs focusing on the arts. It is offered free of charge on Wednesdays at 12:15p. Participants are encouraged to bring lunch or pick up something from The Palette Café. Coffee, tea, and cookies are provided. All programs are held in the FIA’s Isabel Hall unless otherwise noted.

This series of 10 half-hour programs shows how a painted image echos the spirit of its time and relates to a particular historic event. It reveals the poetic, sociological and political potential of the picture by penetrating inside the painting and examine the underlining details, thanks to work of computer graphics which livens up characters, objects and sets. Each film tells a fascinating story of a creator and the painting process.

The Martyrdom of Saint Apollonia by Jean Fouquet

27 min

With a tiny and delicate paintbrush, Jean Fouquet adds the golden threads of a tentative humanism to “The Martyrdom of Saint Apollonia” (circa 1450) and unveils a glimmer of the modern era, crouching behind the horizon of the Middle Ages. This film analyzes the illumination for clues of what Fouquet sought to convey to viewers. Completed for a book of hours commissioned by one of Charles VIII’s financial advisors, it portrays Apollonia’s martyrdom as a mystery play— theatrical performances of Biblical stories popular in medieval towns— to distance viewers from the act of violence. The film also discusses Fouquet’s journey to Italy, where he learned about perspective from Renaissance artists, and talks about his propaganda work as the Hundred Years’ War drew to a close.


Colorful Life by Wassily Kandinsky

27 min

The roots of A Colorful Life, just like those of Wassily Kandinsky himself, were firmly anchored in age-old Russian soil.  And yet the painting contains all the elements that were to accompany the painter in the greatest revolution in the history of art: the leap into abstraction. This documentary examines Kandinsky’s rejection of Western thought and efforts to preserve Russian culture during modernization. He contracted typhus during a trip to study peasant life; his feverish hallucinations inspired the work that evokes a forgotten golden age sought after by Russian Symbolist painters and poets. Finally, viewers learn about the philosophies on color and light that led him to compose his famous Yellow-Red-Blue.