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Kunsthalle Bremen Shows First Individual Exhibition of Impressionist Gustave Caillebotte in Germany
Gustave Caillebotte, Ruderer, 1877. Öl auf Leinwand, 96 x 116 cm. Privatbesitz. Courtesy Comité Gustave Caillebotte, Paris.

BREMEN.- After the great success of “Van Gogh”, “Monet and Camille” and most recently “Paula in Paris”, this summer the Kunsthalle aims to attract visitors with another exhibition highlight: “Gustave Caillebotte – Parisian Impressionist with a passion for water” is the first individual exhibition of work by the French painter in Germany. The Kunsthalle will show Caillebotte’s Impressionist paintings – with every conceivable connection to water – in conjunction with models for boats and the artist’s design drawings.

Kunsthalle Bremen presents Caillebotte to the German public for the first time Gustave Caillebotte (1848-1894) is already known as an outstanding collector of Impressionist paintings and patron to his artist friends Claude Monet, Auguste Renoir and Camille Pissarro. By contrast, appreciation of his own work as a painter of the modern metropolis Paris did not develop until recent years, with exhibitions in Paris, Chicago and London. In cooperation with the Museum Ordrupgaard near Copenhagen and the Museo Thyssen-Bornemisza, the Kunsthalle is now presenting some lesser-known motifs by the artist Caillebotte to the German public for the first time: his waterside scenes. Born into the well-to-do Paris bourgeoisie, Caillebotte first studied law, then attended the École des Beaux-Arts, and later joined the group of Impressionists. In addition to urban scenes and big-city architecture, which he depicted from bold, often cut-off perspectives, Caillebotte – fascinated by light reflexes and its moving surface - painted an endless sequence of water pictures on his parents’ estate in Yerres and later in Petit Gennevilliers by the Seine.

Glittering waves, rowing and life by the water
Surprising perspectives and bold pictorial compositions can also be found among Caillebotte’s lively waterscapes. The painter was a passionate adherent of watersports, and he even designed sailing boats and had them built in his own boatyard; of course, these became key motifs in his paintings. He painted Sunday trippers by the Seine as well as water-sports enthusiasts in their rowing or sailing boats.

The exhibition shows a total of fifty works from international museums and private collections, including rarely exhibited paintings and drawings. Contemporary photographs, design sketches and half-hull models of his most important sailing yachts are shown face to face with the paintings. In this way, the exhibition not only conveys Caillebotte’s significant role in the history of sailing, but also the artist’s two great passions: a love of water sports and of painting.

Caillebotte and the Kunsthalle Bremen
Early on, Caillebotte already belonged to the central group of Impressionists, and he exhibited with them from 1876 onwards. In the Bremen exhibition, paintings by Monet, Pissarro, Renoir, Manet, Cézanne and Degas, as well as extracts from letters will help to present the friendships and artistic relations among the central group of Impressionists, in which Caillebotte played a key role until his death in 1894.

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