Tiny watercolor gems on paper

I had the pleasure of going to a small, temporary exhibit of the Walters Museum’s collection of watercolors by Léon Bonvin, a French painter who lived from 1834-1866. This painting drew me back, and each time I saw new details: the line of the house, the grass in the foreground, and then… faintly beneath the dark wash of night, you can see figures walking toward the house. (Or at least, I surmise that’s what they were doing.) Perfect gemstones of watercolor, each vivid with tiny details. Link to a bigger version of the painting is here: http://art.thewalters.org/detail/19929/moonlight-scene-houses-in-background/.  Portions of the exhibit are online at the Walters website. I keep thinking — how did he manage not to gouge up the weave of the paper with all the additions of watercolor, gall ink, etc.?

The story of the artist is quite sad. Others have discussed his biography.  (The picture here is shared through the fair use from Creative Commons. I suggest going to the links of the exhibits online. There is a way to “explore the paintings”.) I hope you discover some unexpected tiny gems yourself this week, even if the spring rains keep you indoors.

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2 Responses to “Tiny watercolor gems on paper”


  1. 1 nonoymanga April 1, 2012 at 11:22 pm

    Dreamy and atmospheric. Thanks for sharing Nonoy Manga

  2. 2 Anne Bonney April 2, 2012 at 9:56 am

    I agree – these are exceptional works. Thanks.


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