I don’t know as much about art as I should.
Even though I have had the good fortune to visit art museums and galleries all across Europe, and in New York too, my ability to comprehend and fully appreciate the masterpieces on display is generally limited to a Philistinic “yes” or “no“.
There are occasional moments when a painting, seen in person, will take my breath away.
Picasso’s “Guernica” is one of those, partly because of where it hangs.
Da Vinci’s “Mona Lisa” is not, entirely because of where it hangs.
But very few paintings will make me stop and really look.
“A Sunday Afternoon on the Island of La Grande Jatte” is one of those few.
Along with the “Bathers at Asnières” which is almost a companion piece, “Sunday Afternoon” is instantly recognisable to me as the work of dotty old Georges Seurat, who pioneered this unusual technique, more accurately known as poinitillism or divisionism (thank you, Wikipedia).
Thousands of miniature dots or tiny brushstrokes combine to create a vibrant and colourful image, somehow more vivid and alluring than a bunch of dots has any right to expect.
Wikipedia has provided a number of other fascinating facts about the painting, the most interesting of which is that the woman taking prime position on the right appears to be taking a ghost monkey for a walk on a leash.
I’ll say no more about that.
For some reason, this painting has burrowed into my consciousness to such an extent that it’s the screensaver on my phone and I’ve even found a way to clear all the apps into the corner so that I can see as much of it as possible.
But not the bit with the monkey, it seems.