Vollard’s recollections about Cezanne

On this day in 1839 a great Frenc Post-impressionist Paul Cezanne was born Aix-en-Provence, in Provence in the South of France.  His painting method produced a true revolution in the art world, shaping up the base for the future analytical art movements like Cubism.
Of all art genres Cezanne gave special attention to still lifes. During his life he produced over 200 of them! His preferences could be probably explained with the fact that he lacked the quietness of things in his models. This can be brightly illustrated with the episode from Vollard’s recollections about the artist:
“In the middle of the room a chair was standing on a box, which in turn was raised by means of four slim supports. As I looked at the structure with considerable trepidation Cezanne told me he had prepared it for me to pose on. “Oh, there is no danger of your falling Mr. Vollard, if only you keep  your equilibrium. . . . Besides, when one poses one must be quiet.” Once seated and with how many precautions! I was careful not to make a single false movement. The immobility, however, caused me to feel drowsy; this I fought victoriously for some time, but finally inclined my head upon my shoulder; equilibrium then ceased, and the chair, box and myself all fell to the floor. Cezanne ran to me. “Unfortunate man! You have disturbed the pose! Really, you must be as quiet as an apple, an apple that never moves.” From that day on I used to drink a large glass of black coffee before posing. Moreover, Cezanne kept his eye on me and whenever he thought I showed signs of fatigue he would look at me significantly and I immediately would assume the pose of an angel — that is to say, “an apple that never moves.”

Read more on Cezanne’s biography here.

Portrait de M.Ambroise Vollard,the art dealer (1865-1939) (1899)


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