Monday, 9 October 2006


Joaquín Sorolla - Sad InheritanceI've never fancied visiting Spain, because that's where Brit. lager louts take their holidays, get sunburnt and throw up their paella, but here's an exhibition that could change my mind: Sargent/Sorolla at the Thyssen-Bornemisza Museum, Madrid, from 3 October to 7 January 2007. It brings together 128 works by John Singer Sargent and Joaquín Sorolla - two of my favourite artists - to show their careers in parallel, a brilliant idea. Both started as traditional realists and were seduced by Impressionism. I've chosen to illustrate this blog with Sorolla's Sad Inheritance, irrespective of whether it has been included in this exhibition, because it is one of the most poignant works of art I've ever seen. It shows a priest leading a group of children on crutches into the sea, all crippled by poliomyelitis. It's a reminder of the importance of the "polio" vaccine, which has saved thousands of children from this sad fate.


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