Saturday, June 4, 2011

Joaquin Sorolla My Inspiration and trip of a lifetime to Madrid


After the Bath 1908 - Sorolla

Good-Bye Venice, Good Bye - I must leave you today.  Following a celebration and graduation with my God Child and nephew in Venice Italy.  We travelled by vaporetto to Venice airport.  Destination:London for my nephew.  Destination: Madrid for yours truly.


Vaporetto ride from Zattere to Venice Airport



Ceramic on exterior wall of Sorolla's home

My favourite artist is the Spanish impressionistic painter Joaquin Sorolla (one time someone told me my work resembled Sorrolla's and it was the biggest compliment I could ever have been paid and it went straight to my head. Oh how I wish, wish and wish, hope and pray that I will understand light and shadow as he did.  St. Barbara patron saint of artists please grant my wish)

Sorolla Museum Madrid



 With sketchbook and paint box in tow for the next  3 days I sketched, painted, studied and took notes. The staff were most kind and helpful and I was made feel very welcomed.
 The Sorolla Museum is located in Madrid, Spain.  Joaquin Sorolla y Bastida was born in Valencia in 1863 and died in 1923. He was orphaned at 2 yrs. Lived with his sister, under the tutelage of his maternal aunt and uncle, who saw his interest in art. He was given art lessons. He spent a lifetime studying and painting. He met Clothilde who became the love of his life, married and moved to Madrid where he brought up his family, in the home which is now his museum.  Every item in the home was selected with love and a passion and eye for colour and detail.Among his  collection were exotic butterflies which were framed beneath glass and these vivid cobalts, lapis lazuli and turquoises showed up in his paintings. He has a beautiful collection of religious statues, holy water fonts in ceramics and artifacts which held meaning for him.  His eternal love for his family is evident in his home and his work.  His studio, paint box and easel are visible.

Pathway leading to Sorolla's studio

The Museum is actually the Sorolla home and the rooms remain as they were. The dining room is of particular interest.  It has a large border of canvas painted by Sorolla, which is garlands held by cherubs and the faces on the angels are those of his children and his beloved Clothilde.  He loved his wife and his children.
Dining room - panel painted by Sorolla - the models for angels were Clothilde and Sorolla's children


Once inspired, Sorolla  would hastily use any surface to paint, it could be a matchbox, napkin, piece of cardboard  and it was these initial paintings which were so exciting for me.  There is a wall with several of these miniature quick paintings, which exude so much energy, excitement and urgency

Study 5" x 7" on cardboard
Study on cardboard
study on paper
blocked in study on board

The time went all too quickly.  At such times, one forgets to eat, drink or even breathe. Aaah!

Adios a mi amigo
Sorolla Museum in Madrid

48 comments:

  1. Thank you Helen for sharing your wonderful trip. I have so enjoyed reading your post and looking at all your beautiful photographs. The border that Sorolla painted in the dining room is simply stunning. I imagine being there must have been a very moving experience. You will no doubt have felt very inspired and I would love to see your paintings from the time you were there.
    Abby

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  2. So happy to find your site Helen, A wonderful post of your travels!

    Be sure to enter my awesome $250 Giveaway from Tracy Porter!!

    xoxo
    Karena
    Art by Karena

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  3. Hello Helen:
    This is all too wonderful for words. Magical. And there we were thinking that you were nicely tucked up in bed in Toronto whilst all the while you have been gadding about Europe taking in one experience after another in the true sense of the traveller abroad.

    Venice is, as you know, the most splendid of cities to which we return time and time again [via a daily overnight train from Budapest] and away from the Rialto or St. Mark's, it is still possible to have it all to oneself.

    But, Madrid, and the Joaquin Sorolla house/museum is, from your description and pictures, something totally extraordinary and inspirational and somewhere we now long to visit. Oh, the wall panel in the dining room, to die for, along with almost everything else in that house. It is knowing of, and experiencing, these kinds of things which, in our view, are so life enhancing.

    Thank you so much for this exceptional post.

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  4. Helen

    I so enjoyed your post and the lovely images!

    I must thank you for introducing me to this artist. I read your post with interest. I love the enthusiasm with which you talk about art: it's infectious!

    I will now explore Sorolla and his art and I know I will be introduced to a new Universe made of colours, images and moods which will "talk" to me!

    PS: You seem to have a strong link with Europe.


    ANNA

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  5. My Spotty Pony - Hello Abby. How kind of you to read my post and lave a comment. There was so much to say about this trip and I could go on forever. I was truly inspired and moved and felt a connection to the soul of the artist.
    I will be painting and remembering my lessons learned for a long time.
    Have a wonderful week and pats to the pony
    Helen

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  6. Thank you Karena for reading my post and leaving a comment. I will certainly pop over to your site and look forward to knowing you
    Helen

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  7. Jane & Lance, I can just visualize you both dining alfresco in the garden of Antica Locanta Montin in Dorsoduro (if you have not been it is a must)Hard to find but worth it. I can send you the link if needed. Then perhaps see you in a box at the wonderful La Fenice listening to La Traviata. Oh could I go on and on.
    I feel like Venice is my second home and while not just a train ride away is worth all the jet lag. You are so blessed to be so close to VCE.
    Yes, you would love Sorolla Museum in Madrid. It is manageable and give a great insight into the sould of the man. I have tremendous respect for him.

    Thank you both so kindly for reading my blog and I just love seeing your names in my comments section.
    Have a wonderful week
    Helen

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  8. Hello Anna
    Thank you for your time in reading my post and leaving your welcome comments. As an artist I feel you will enjoy the work of Sorolla. Sadly, he was not as appreciated in Spain as he should have been. Like often happens, one has to make it abroad (Sorolla did in Italy where he created his master pieces) before the natives approve. Two years ago was his first exhibition at the Prado.The Spanish in America did recognize his talents and he was commissioned to do several larger master works there.
    I have strong ties to Europe, four brothers and a sister and many cousins in Ireland. Italy is one of my most favoured European countries.
    Hope the sun shines on you this week
    Helen

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  9. What a wonderful trip you had. I have always wanted to visit Madrid.....thank you for your sweet comment about my white floors...I love the look of them and I am just hoping that they will not be too terribly hard to keep up :)

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  10. Dear Helen, Thank you for visiting us. What a lovely blog you have-educational and a feast for the eyes! Look forward to visiting with you again! With love, Mona

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  11. Hello Sherry Hart,
    I feel you would love Madrid. It is a beautiful city to walk and quite manageable. They have an excellent subway system, which even connects to Madrid airport.

    Surprisingly, white floors are easy to maintain and they are always to fresh, I love it when the sunlight dances and reflects onto them.

    To a great week
    Helen

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  12. Mrs. Little Jeans

    Hello Mona

    A big thank you for reading my blog and an even bigger thanks for your kind comments.

    I am looking forward to skipping over to you and finding out more.

    To a wonderful week
    Helen

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  13. Hello again Helen:
    Thank you so much for the restaurant tip. The name seems vaguely familiar but we are sure we have not been. However, you can be certain that we shall look it up for our next Venice adventure.

    Perhaps we shall be able to persuade you to have a Budapest adventure with us at some point?

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  14. Jane and Lance

    Good Morning

    The restaurant Locanta Antica Montin is so spectacular, dine in the garden which is canopied by wines. As gardiners you will love it even more.
    www.locandamontin.com

    Now Budapest what a beautiful thought.From what I have read about this fair city, there is so much to see and do. Don't you love researching a new city or area prior to going?
    I will have you kind offer in mind and I thank you both most sincerely for such a generous offer. I love seeing a country through the eyes of a resident of that city who is passionate about life and living. You both fit this category.
    My best

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  15. Helen, thankyou for taking us on your travels with you. I have never been to Venice or Madrid, but am sure I would love both. I hadn't heard of Sorolla, but your enthusiasm is contagious. The light in that first painting is extremely beautiful. Thankyou for the lesson, I have really enjoyed your most interesting post, love Linda x

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  16. Flowers On My Table
    Good morning Linda. You will love Venice and Madrid and your mind will be buzzing with design ideas for your flower arrangements. Like all artists, you likely find inspiration from so many objects and travel definitely fine tunes ones observation and how we look at our world on returning home.
    Hope you are feeling better

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  17. Oh Helen, I'm so happy to meet you. Please do come for tea anytime. I'm going to tour your blog and enjoy your beautiful images and travel adventures. Look forward to visiting with you often, I'll be your newest follower. Thanks for stopping in and introducing yourself. I am going now to read about your journey........

    ~Emily
    The French Hutch

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  18. Sounds like you had a wonderful time Helen! I love Sorrolla's work and indeed that was a compliment. Thanks for the follow!!Maryanne ;)

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  19. Hello Helen, Firstly , thank you for you kind comments on my blog. Your trip looks magical, what a beautiful painting in the Sorolla dining room. I can see how you were sad to leave, but such happy memories xx
    Sophie

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  20. Dear Helen,
    your kind message made me happy today! Thank you very much for your warm words and for your visit. I´ll take the time with joy to discover your artistical world here! :)
    Best regards, Marjolijn

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  21. Lindo teu blog!
    Já sou seguidora.
    studiodabere.blogspot.com

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  22. Hi Emily at The French Hut

    I know I would really enjoy tea at your home and your hospitality would be memorable. Thanks for the beautiful invitation. Now I must polish my silver and get ready for your visit
    fondly, Helen

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  23. Hello Maryanne at Beadboard Up Country
    Thank you for stopping by. It is lovely to meet you and know we share a big appreciation for Sorolla.
    My best
    Helen

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  24. Hello Sophie at Fading Grace

    It as so wonderful to fulfill a dream and visit Sorolla's home. It was, like you said, sad to say goodbye. I have so many memories, sketches and notes and I will enjoy my lessons learned and try and put into practice in my art, my observations.
    Hope your day is special
    Helen

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  25. Hello Something White, Marjolijn

    Lovely to visit with you and the joy will be all mine in hearing your story.
    To friendship
    Helen

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  26. Hello Bere at Studiobere

    Thank you for complimenting my blog and thank you sincerely for being a follower
    My best

    Helen

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  27. Thank you for a wonderful post! I love reading about travels to other countries. It sounds like it was a magical trip, with memories to last a lifetime. I had never heard of Joaquin Sorolla but many thanks for introducing me to his art work. His paintings are so beautiful! I have yet to visit Madrid - I have only ever visited Barcelona and my travel companion at the time insisted that we spend the time at the beaches and the parks, not in art museums!

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  28. Hi Louise, Thank you for visiting again. It is curious how we grow and change in what activities we do when on holidays. I used love the beach too, until knowing better.I feel you would like Madrid. They have one of the best Zara stores there also.
    Stay cool in this hot weather.
    Helen xxx

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  29. I have been itching to go out painting en plein air all week! And I have the same easel...you are so inspiring...I've looked at some of your older posts! Now following...and I do hope you'll visit with me often.


    Ciao Bella!


    CREATIVE CARMELINA

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  30. beautiful art and and a wonderful trip. what could be better? donna

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  31. Hello Carmelita

    I will look forward to hearing about your painting en plein air.
    You are creative in so many aspects, how wonderful. I can see your life is always full of the joys of creation
    My best
    Ciao Bella

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  32. you are a world traveler! Isn't Venice beautiful? I've never been to Madrid. What a wonderful experience you had. I'm sure you left the city inspired.

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  33. Hello Donna at A Perfect Gray

    So right Donna, a wonderful combination art, travel, adventure and learning.

    Lovely to have you visit
    Helen

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  34. Elisa

    Thanks for stopping by. Yes Venice is spectacular and I return often. Isn't travel wonderful? I absolutely love going somewhere I have not been before and discovering. Time to get going and make new discoveries today.
    xx Helen

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  35. hello Helen, I have to say how much I am enjoying working my way through your posts. I do so love to read of travel adventures made by blogger friends. I love to read between the lines, as in your trip to Venice. I compare emotions and the different ways in how we experience new cities and travel in general. I'm glad to know I'm not the only one who bids farewell to a favorite city. Each time thinking it will be my last time to visit, only to find myself returning. I watched your video Helen, you are a very talented, lovely lady. I enjoyed hearing you tell of your memories in the seaside home, a lovely painting. My sister and DIL are both painters, and I'm happy to say I've been on the receiving side of their art.
    I hope your weekend will be wonderful........

    ~Emily
    The French Hutch

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  36. All those little paintings are to die for! SO nice for you to have gotten to travel there. I surely wouldn't forget to eat though :)

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  37. Hi Janet,

    How lovely to have visited Venice and Madrid. Two cities I have heard of so much, but never actually seen. Hopefully one day....you never know! Soralla lived in a very pretty house. I must admit that I never heard of his name before, but I like his style of painting.

    Happy weekend!

    Lieve groet, Madelief

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  38. What an incredible trip.

    Thanks so much for stopping by La Lamp Shade!

    xo,

    Raina
    If the Lamp Shade Fits

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  39. " Every item in the home was selected with love and a passion and eye for colour and detail" - exactly what we should do, rather than buy three piece suites from sofas-r-us. The world would be a better place for more of his sort. Lucky you to have such a marvelous trip!

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  40. Hello Helen,
    What a lovely post, I'm so glad to be introduced to the works of Sorolla. From a first look at your pictures, his work reminds me just a little of that of Dame Laura Knight, who's paintings I love. I can see some happy houirs researching ahead! May the rest of your travels be happy ones. Best wishes, Jane

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  41. Hello Emily at The French Hut
    So lovely to hear from you and of your joy of travelling and falling in love with places. Thank you for watching my you tube video. It was made by a TV station in Toronto, similar to PBS in USA, and it still runs on air prior to longer documentaries. The photographer and director who filmed me had recently returned from Antartica and both were most accomplished. How great it is that you have the beautiful art of DIL and your sister.
    To continued friendship
    Helen

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  42. Hello Auntie Bliss
    So pleased you liked the little paintings, they were indeed so full of energy and optimism.
    Ha Ha I liked your comment on not forgetting to ear and in my post of this week you will see I did indulge.
    Have a lovely weekend
    Helen

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  43. Hello Madelief
    Lovely to hear from you. From what I know of your wonderful taste, I feel you would love Sorolla's home. Such wonderful attention to detail.
    You have two wonderful cities to look forward to seeing. Venice is truly magical once one gets away from St Mark's Square particularly if several cruise ships are in port. Perhaps you could visit in late Autums/early Spring but I will warn you to dress warmly then.
    It is lovely to make your acquaintance
    Helen

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  44. Hello Raina "If the Lamp Fits"
    Thanks for the visit and support Raina.
    have a lovely weekend
    Helen

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  45. Hello Mise
    Thanks for "an cuairt" (visit). I also love your witticisms. You have such a beautiful way with words. Your obserations and expression are simply marvelous. Is your last name Wilde, Joyce or Shaw?

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  46. Hello Jane The Booklady

    Thanks Jane for visiting. I will look forward to researching Dame Laura Knight. It is lovely to hear of an artist I do not know of.
    Thanks so much for this and have a lovely weekend
    Helen

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  47. Dear Helen, what an inspirational post! So interesting to read about your travels, to learn about the artist!
    Thank you for sharing. And thank you for leaving a comment on my blog!
    Laura
    http://luxinteriordesigns.com

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  48. Hello Laura from luxinteriordesign.com
    How lovely to hear that you felt inspiration from this post.
    I think you will love to see Sorolla' original work. Like all original art it has a magic.
    Fondly,
    Helen xx

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