The Swiss painter and death

I’ve been very struck by the paintings of Ferdinand Hodler – a famous Swiss painter. Died 1918. Lived part of his life in Geneva.  Two things. Incredible landscapes – the use of colour brings me back to look at them again and again – simple views of the lakes, mountains and clouds around Geneva. The second – an extraordinary, confronting, very powerful series of paintings of his lover Velentine Godé-Darel – who was dying of cancer. The series shows her lying in bed ill, then dying, then dead. Incredibly stark. She had his child, which was adopted by Hodler’s wife after her death.

A selection of the paintings below – some taken from a book with my own camera, couldn’t get great quality – but they give a sense. The paintings were recently on exhibition at the Neue Galerie in New York – and are usually exhibited in Switzerland.

IMG_3877Dents du Midi in Clouds 1917Lake Geneva with Mont Blanc at dawn. 1918

IMG_3883dying valentineIMG_3885death bed

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