Denise M Taylor

Writing Consultant I Editor I Proofreader I Teacher

If the name Vanessa Bell (1879-1961) doesn’t ring a bell, then maybe her younger sister’s name, Virginia Woolf, does. Happily, my recent stay in London coincided with an exhibition of Vanessa’s art at the Dulwich Picture Gallery, and I also visited Charleston House, her charming rural bolthole in East Sussex. Combining these visits enabled me to better understand this artist […]

If you think the French artist, Edgar Degas (1834-1917), just painted pretty ballerinas in soft pastels, then you’ll know otherwise once you’ve visited the National Gallery of Victoria exhibition featuring works spanning more than five decades of his career. You’ll find out that this enigmatic man depicted modern Parisian life—warts and all—in many intriguing ways. Some pigeon-hole Degas as an […]

Categories: Musings on Art

We’ve all deleted or manipulated photos of ourselves if we don’t like the way we look. So do we really care if our ‘self-portraits’ are just constructions, images of ourselves that we want to convey, at a particular place and moment in time? Self-portraits that mask the identity of the artist are often slammed as being pretentious and gimmicky, disallowing […]

Categories: Musings on Art

Mont Sainte-Victoire is Cézanne’s mountain and I had to see it. On 13 October 2012 we’d spent too much time wandering through the charming town of Aix-en-Provence where Paul Cézanne (1839-1906) had lived most of his life. It was one of those perfect days in Provence: blue skies with a clear heat, but the autumnal sun was sinking towards the […]

Claude Monet (1846-1926) painted water in its many forms and moods—a rough and animated sea, a misty and mysterious river, a still and reflective pond, and crisp, white snow. Monet began his water garden at his home in Giverny in 1893, and over time the plants in and around the pond grew and merged, softened and framed. In Monet’s painting, […]

Categories: Musings on Art

Paris during October 2012 was grey most of the time; the train to Avignon, Provence, delivered us from rain into blue skies, sun and heat. In February 1888 Dutch painter, Vincent van Gogh (1853-1890), also travelled to the south of France in search of light and “the future of new Art”. He voluntarily entered the asylum, Saint-Paul de Mausole on […]

It all started when Japan opened its doors to the West in the 1850s and Japanese works of art infiltrated Europe, the centre of interest being in Paris. By 1867 French Impressionist artists such as Claude Monet turned their attention to the popular ukiyo-e (‘pictures of the floating world’) woodblock prints and illustrated books that depicted life in the urban […]