2017’s EY exhibition at the Tate is Impressionists in London, French Artists in Exile (1870-1904)

SIX years ago, EY (Ernst Young) and the Tate formed an art partnership that brings prestigious exhibitions focusing on major figures and moments in art history. This autumn the exhibition is being held at the Tate Britain and is titled Impressionists in London, French Artists in Exile (1870-1904). The exhibition has been curated by Dr Caroline Corbeau-Parsons in collaboration with French galleries, Petit Palais and Paris Musées.

EY exhibition - Monet, Houses of Parliament Claude Monet, Houses of Parliament, sunlight effect (1903)

Work by Monet, Tissot, Pisarro, Sisley and other French artists who sought refuge in Britain during the Franco-Prussian war that shows recognisable London views will be exhibited in order for visitors to consider London’s landmarks through French exiles’ eyes. The exhibition includes more than just paintings – there are sketches and etchings done by famous painters and sculptures by famous French sculptors like Jules Dalou and Jean-Baptiste Carpeaux.

As well as sections that look at the work of specific artists during their time in London, a whole part  of the exhibition has been dedicated to the artists’ depictions of the Thames. Additionally, the exhibition seeks to consider the impact London had on the work of these well-known artists and how they interacted with British culture.

EY Exhibition - Pissarro, Charing Cross BridgeCamille Pissarro, Charing Cross Bridge (1890)

EY Exhibition - Sisley, Molosey Weir, Hampton CourtAlfred Sisley, Molesey Weir, Hampton Court, Morning (1874)

EY exhibition - Monet, Leicester SquareClaude Monet, Leicester Square (1901)

The exhibition also aims to map out the artistic networks these artists built in Britain. After their arrival in London, the French artists sought out notable figures who could mentor them and provide them with financial assistance. Examples include Charles-François Daubigny, who mentored Monet, and Paul Durand-Ruel, an art dealer who first met Monet and Pissarro during their exile in London in the 1870s and bought over 5000 Impressionist works.

Ey Exhibition - Tissot, The Ball on ShipboardJames Tissot, The Ball on Shipboard (1874)

EY Exhibition, Camille Pissarro, Kew GreenCamille Pissarro, Kew Green (1892)

Glass attended the press view of the EY Exhibition: Impressionists in London. The first room provides a useful historical context to the Franco-Prussian war that helps the audience to understand why these artists resided in Britain and how their personal experiences in the war inspired their later work. For example, Pissarro chose to paint suburban life in Norwood in south-east London, where he lived when he first visited London, rather than painting central London, because these places reminded him of his home which had been destroyed during the Prussian invasion. He said painting these places were a way to deal with his homesickness.

The EY Exhibition
Camille Pissarro, Crystal Palace, Upper Norwood (1871)

Another really interesting section of the exhibition was the final section where André Derain responded to Monet’s Views of the Thames exhibition in Paris by making his own pieces of the same subject but with a more modern, more intensely colourful approach.

fullsizeoutput_7ddAndré Derain, Barges on the Thames (Canon Street bridge) (1906-7)

The EY Exhibition André Derain, Charing Cross Bridge (1906)

by Allie Nawrat 

The EY Exhibition: Impressionists in London is running at the Tate Britain from November 2, 2017 until May 7 2018

Tickets cost £19.70 for adults and is free for children under 12

The exhibition is accompanied by a programme of talks and events at the Tate Britain

Previous EY collaborative exhibitions with the Tate include Paul Klee – Making Visible (2013), Late Turner – Painting Set Free (2014), Sonia Delaunay (2015) and The World Goes Pop (2015). 2018’s exhibition will be Picasso 1932 – Love, Fame and Tragedy

Tate Britain, Milibank, London, SW1P 4RG

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