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Nicolas Poussin (1594-1665): The Holy Family with Saints Anne, Elizabeth and John, called The Virgin with ten figures, 1649, National Gallery of Ireland, Dublin, Photo © National Gallery of Ireland

HAMBURG.- In the seventeenth century, French painting began to set the standards for all of Europe. Values in France during the Enlightenment began to shift toward a bourgeois society where painters were exposed to new themes and new artistic experiments. The French Revolution, the prototype of all struggles for liberation, marked a new era that became deeply entrenched in the development of French painting. The exhibition From Poussin to Monet. The Colors of France focuses on the effect that this dramatic social upheaval had on art. 

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Nicolas Poussin (1594-1665): Acis and Galatea1627, National Gallery of Ireland, Dublin, Photo © National Gallery of Ireland

During Poussin’s time, an argument broke out regarding the role of color in painting. Sensory experience and subjective perception became increasingly important until color was freed entirely by the Impressionists at the end of the nineteenth century. Paul Cézanne viewed nature as an arrangement of planes of color. Paintings no longer told a narrative; instead they gave to see. Color no longer depicted light; it became light. 

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Simon Vouet (1590-1649): The Four Seasons1644, National Gallery of Ireland, Dublin, Photo © National Gallery of Ireland

The exhibition demonstrates France’s path to modern art with paintings and drawings by Poussin, Watteau, Chardin, Delacroix, Corot, Courbet, Monet, Renoir, Cézanne, Van Gogh and others. 

In cooperation with the National Gallery of Ireland in Dublin, and the Collection Rau for UNICEF at the Arp Museum Bahnhof Rolandseck in Remagen, Germany. There the exhibition ran from March 22 to September 6, 2015 under the title Revolution of Image. From Poussin to Monet.

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Jean Étienne Le Bel (active 1767-1774): Fête champêtre - dance, 18th century, National Gallery of Ireland, Dublin, Photo © National Gallery of Ireland

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Jean Siméon Chardin (1699-1779), Card tricks, circa 1735, National Gallery of Ireland, Dublin, Photo © National Gallery of Ireland

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Jean-Baptiste Greuze (1725-1805): The Capuchin doll1765, National Gallery of Ireland, Dublin, Photo © National Gallery of Ireland

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Eugène Delacroix (1798-1863): Demosthenes said to the waves1859, National Gallery of Ireland, Dublin, Photo © National Gallery of Ireland

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Eugène Boudin (1824-1898): The beach at Trouville1868, Arp Museum Bahnhof Rolandseck / collection Rau for UNICEF, Remagen, Photo: Peter Schälchli, Zurich

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Claude Monet (1840-1926): Flood1881, Arp Museum Bahnhof Rolandseck / collection Rau for UNICEF, Remagen, Photo: Peter Schälchli, Zurich

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Pierre-Auguste Renoir (1841-1919): Young Woman Reading in White, 1873, National Gallery of Ireland, Dublin, Photo © National Gallery of Ireland

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Vincent van Gogh (1853-1890): Wiew over the rooftops of Paris, 1886, National Gallery of Ireland, Dublin, Photo © National Gallery of Ireland

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Alfred Sisley (1839-1899): The banks of the Canal du Loing at Saint-Mammès, 1888, National Gallery of Ireland, Dublin, Photo © National Gallery of Ireland

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Paul Cézanne (1839-1906): The Sea at L'Estaque, 1876, Arp Museum Bahnhof Rolandseck / collection Rau for UNICEF, Remagen, Photo: Peter Schälchli, Zurich

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Roderic O'Conor (1860-1940): Farm at Lezaven, Finistère1894, National Gallery of Ireland, Dublin, Photo © National Gallery of Ireland

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Paul Signac (1863-1935), Woman on the terrace, 1898, National Gallery of Ireland, Dublin, Photo © National Gallery of Ireland

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Exhibition views "From Poussin to Monet: The Colors of France"Photo: Daniel Bockwoldt