Friday, July 09, 2010

Washington, Schwaebisch Gmuend and standing up in a boat

Emmanuel Leutze, Schwaebisch Gmuend artist
Schwaebisch Gmuend is the sister city of Bethlehem, PA and Antibes, France

German-born Emmanuel Leutze (1816-1868) grew up in America, then returned to Germany as an adult, where he conceived of the idea for this painting during the Revolutions of 1848. Hoping to encourage Europe's liberal reformers through the example of the American Revolution, and using American tourists and art students as models and assistants, Leutze finished the first painting in 1850.

Just after it was completed, the first version was damaged by fire in his studio, subsequently restored, and acquired by the Kunsthalle Bremen.
In 1942, during World War II, it was destroyed in a bombing raid by the British Royal Air Force (which has led to a persistent joke that the raid was Britain's final retaliation for the American Revolution).

The second painting, a full-sized copy of the first, was begun in 1850 and placed on exhibition in New York in October 1851. More than 50,000 people viewed it. The painting was originally bought by Marshall O. Roberts for $10,000 (at the time, an enormous sum).
After changing ownership several times, it was finally donated to the Metropolitan Museum of Art by John Stewart Kennedy in 1897. It remains on exhibition there today.

George Washington standing up in the boat

George Washington, oops I mean Audouin, standing up in the boat

WHAT is it about men that they feel that they MUST stand up in a boat ?? I was very lucky to catch a ride in a fishing boat to view the mayor of Antibes toss the flowers in the sea in honor of the sailors that passed before us. Sitting across from the mayor of tourisme in Antibes, I photographed him ... and wondered WHY do men feel the urge to stand up in a boat ?? ... ahhh the sweet mysteries of life ...

Tonight is the two part opera at Eilenroc ... so very much looking forward to this ... the MOST beautiful setting, opera singers, orchestra ... champagne ... surely paradise


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