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Bonington, Richard Parkes (1802-1828) - Portrait of a Bearded Man in Historical Dress (Metropolitan Musem of Art, New York City)
Brush and brown wash; 11 x 9 3/16 in.
English Romantic painter, known for his landscapes and historical scenes. His style attracted many imitators in both England and France, and he exercised an influence out of all proportion to his brief life.
At Calais, France (c. 1817), Bonington learned the watercolor tradition of the English painter Thomas Girtin. He became acquainted with the French painter Eugene Delacroix in Paris. Bonington entered the Ecole des Beaux-Arts, Paris (1819), and joined the atelier of Baron Gros, who had departed from the rigid classicism of the influential Jacques-Louis David. Bonington’s bright watercolors, a novelty in Paris, financed sketching tours in Normandy, Picardy, and Flanders (1821–23). He showed at the Paris Salon in 1822 and at the famous Salon of 1824 with John Constable, Sir Thomas Lawrence, and others, where he won a gold medal. With Delacroix he studied Constable, and together they went to England (1825), where Bonington learned something of Turner’s skill. More important, both were affected by the English fashion for painting scenes from history. In his subsequent historical pictures, he evolved in oil a new synthesis of Flemish and Venetian techniques. His works were exhibited in London (1826, 1828) and won immediate popularity.
As a master of the Romantic movement and as a technical innovator in oil and watercolor, Bonington was influential in England and France. His gifts as a draftsman were high; as a colorist, good. He also showed his talent in the new medium of lithography, illustrating Sir Walter Scott.
French Connection adverts are as confusing as any French new wave film
The adverts are as confusing as any French new wave film but, like arthouse films, they star beautiful people wearing beautiful clothes. The latest instalment of French Connection's esoteric "You are Man?" and "You are Woman?" campaign sees a leggy model in a white jumpsuit glide by on roller skates while setting off fire extinguishers. In another irreverent image, a mustachioed metrosexual in a smart shirt stands in the sea astride an inflatable animal.It's a million miles way from T-shirts emblazoned with "FCUK like a bunny" and "FCUK for England" which resulted in high street oblivion for the retailer in the middle of the last decade, when shoppers finally tired of the risque play on the UK brand's initials. "What French Connection did with FCUK got people talking, but now they are trying to get people thinking," says Stuart Wood, global creative director at design agency Fitch. "Its clothes aren't that different from ones you can buy at chains like Reiss, but what it has always had is attitude. FCUK was a blunt instrument but it had attitude. But if you are over the age of 25, you are so used to seeing that slogan that French Connection had to do something radical to make you reassess the brand." Read more on Guardian
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