Light & Liberty: Le Grand Atelier du Midi

André Derain, Le faubourg de Collioure, 1905 (© Philippe Migeat - Centre Pompido
André Derain, Le faubourg de Collioure, 1905, oil on canvas, 59,5 x 73,2 cm (© Philippe Migeat - Centre Pompidou, MNAM-CCI (diffusion RMN) © Adagp, Paris)

Jackie Wullschlager reviews two concurrent exhibitions: Le Grand Atelier du Midi: de Van Gogh à Bonnard at Palais Longchamp, Marseille and De Cézanne à Matisse at Musée Granet, Aix-en-Provence, on view through October 13, 2013.

Wullschlager writes: "These are modernism’s canonical stories but they have never been more comprehensively amplified, nor more ideally sited, than in the double show of some 200 works, Le Grand Atelier du Midi, taking place this summer at Marseille’s splendidly refurbished, fantastically elaborate Second Empire Palais de Longchamp, and at Aix’s Musée Granet. The Marseille exhibition, opening with Van Gogh’s scorched wheat fields and interior of his Yellow House, is more glamorous, and deals broadly with colour. At Aix a more sober account, inaugurated by Cézanne’s 'La Montagne Saint-Victoire' and 'Maison sous les arbres,' concentrates on form – so sharply delineated in the southern sunlight that the effects provoked artists to explore new abstracting or chromatic approaches."