AMERICAN GALLERY

Greatest American Painters

Romaine Brooks (1874 – 1970)

Posted by L. A. on January 14, 2014


Self-Portrait (1912)

Self-Portrait (1912)

Gabriele D'Annunzio

Gabriele D’Annunzio

Spring

Spring

Green Silk Dress

Green Silk Dress

Ida Rubinstein

Ida Rubinstein

Huntress

Huntress

Self-Portrait (1912)

Self-Portrait (1912)

White Azaleas

White Azaleas

The Charwoman

The Charwoman

Baroness Emile d'Erlanger

Baroness Emile d’Erlanger

The Red Jacket

The Red Jacket

The Cross Of France

The Cross Of France

Peter, A Young English Girl (The Artist Hannah Gluckstein aka Gluck)

Peter, A Young English Girl (The Artist Hannah Gluckstein aka Gluck)

Renata Borgatti At The Piano

Renata Borgatti At The Piano

The Weeping Venus (Ida Rubinstein)

The Weeping Venus (Ida Rubinstein)

Elisabeth De Gramont

Elisabeth De Gramont

Madame Errazuris

Madame Errazuris

Self-Portrait (1923)

Self-Portrait (1923)

Una, Lady Troubridge

Una, Lady Troubridge

Miss Natalie Barney, l'Amazone

Miss Natalie Barney, l’Amazone

The Piano

The Piano

Timetable

Timetable

Young English Girl

Young English Girl

Elsie de Wolfe, Young English Girl

Elsie de Wolfe

Muriel Draper

Muriel Draper

Self-Portrait (1905)

Self-Portrait (1905)

Duke Uberto Strozzi

Duke Uberto Strozzi

Le Bonnet à Brides

Le Bonnet à Brides

The Debutante

The Debutante

Luisa Casati

Marchesa Luisa Casati

Jean Cocteau à l'époque de la Grand Rue

Jean Cocteau à l’époque de la Grand Rue

Sketch Of Ida Rubinstein

Sketch Of Ida Rubinstein

 

6 Responses to “Romaine Brooks (1874 – 1970)”

  1. Vincenzo said

    It seems to me a very original painting with a great taste for elegance, though a bit ‘tending to melancholy. I also like the portrait of the great poet Gabriele d’Annunzio.

  2. Don Hyde said

    Thanks, great stuff!!!! Could you do David Leffel sometime?

  3. Bruce said

    It’s always fun to look for a backstory when an interesting painting catches my eye. For example, why the mourning outfit in “Self Portrait (1905)”?

    Her mother had died a few years previously, but that could not be it: “According to her memoir, when she was seven, her mother fostered her to a poor family living in a New York City tenement, then disappeared and stopped making the agreed-upon payments. The family continued to care for Beatrice, although they sank further into poverty. She did not tell them where her grandfather lived for fear of being returned to her mother.”

    Perhaps it was this: “On 13 June 1903 [Beatrice Romaine] Goddard married her friend John Ellingham Brooks, an unsuccessful pianist and translator who was in deep financial difficulty. He was homosexual, and the bisexual Goddard never revealed exactly why she married him. We can’t be sure she was bisexual and she married him because it afforded her a kind of freedom she could not have as a single woman. She followed the pattern of many lesbians of her generation. Her biographer Meryle Secrest suggests that she was motivated by concern for him and a desire for companionship, rather than the need for a marriage of convenience. They quarrelled almost immediately when she cut her hair and ordered men’s clothes for a planned walking tour of England; he refused to be seen in public with her dressed that way. Chafing at his desire for outward propriety, she left him after only a year and moved to London.”

    Or maybe it was merely this: “Brooks had an unhappy childhood after her father abandoned the family; her mother was emotionally abusive and her brother mentally ill. By her own account, her childhood cast a shadow over her whole life.”

    The quoted passages are from http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Romaine_Brooks.

  4. Vincenzo said

    With the description of some particular aspects that have profoundly marked the life of the artist, is still better understood the melancholy that transmit her paintings that is, of course, the melancholy of the same painter, moved in her paintings, through its preference for Color tones rather darker, for the figures and dresses from lines very elegant and slightly elongated bodies, but above all, her inner melancholy, transpires in the expressions of the characters portrayed, almost all of lean physique and mind absorbed in deep thought . These are the thoughts and reflections of a woman is extremely sensitive. I do not think Romaine Broocks was a lesbian, because otherwise it would explain the presence among her works, the excellent portrait of Gabriele D’Annunzio, a poet who is very famous for its unbridled interest for the female sex, and that was defined a true symbol of male chauvinism. Evidently also Romaine, like almost all the women artists of the time (writers, poets, actors, dancers, painters, etc …), he felt the charm of extravagant male personality of D’Annunzio. But even if she had been really a lesbian, this does not detract from its artistic sensitivity.
    I belong to heterosexuals, and are attracted only by the female, but this, of course, does not mean that I do not appreciate the creative talent of the artists, regardless of their sexual orientation. The art world in general, is very diverse in terms of sexual orientation.

    • Vincenzo said

      I’m sorry for the many grammatical errors in my English. I realize that I have to be more careful with pronouns, but as often happens, the errors escape me for too much haste. On the other hand, astrologically I’m a ram, and as such, I am impulsive and hasty (just kidding …). The most plausible explanation is that I am Italian, and as such, I think the words and phrases, before in Italian, and then translate them into English. The Italian thought and written and spoken is very verbose. Maybe I should think and write in a more synthetic. However, I hope to be understood at least in what I intend to express.

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