Exhibit Reveals Creative Process, Influence of Paul Gauguin

The artist Paul Gauguin is perhaps best known for his paintings of women in Tahiti in the 1890s. His work influenced many modern artists, including Picasso and Matisse. 

Less well known is Gauguin's work in ceramics, woodcarving, printmaking and furniture decoration.

A new exhibition at the Art Institute of Chicago, "Gauguin: Artist as Alchemist," features those works, along with canvases believed to be influenced by those forays into the applied arts. 

Joining host Phil Ponce is the exhibit's curator, Gloria Groom.

  • Paul Gauguin. Clovis Sleeping, 1884. Private collection.

    Paul Gauguin. Clovis Sleeping, 1884. Private collection.

  • Paul Gauguin. The Singer, 1880. Ny Carlsberg Glyptotek, Copenhagen, MIN 3230.

    Paul Gauguin. The Singer, 1880. Ny Carlsberg Glyptotek, Copenhagen, MIN 3230.

  • Paul Gauguin. Te nave nave fenua (Delightful Land), about 1892. Musée de Grenoble, bequest of Agutte-Sembat, 1923 © Musée de Grenoble.

    Paul Gauguin. Te nave nave fenua (Delightful Land), about 1892. Musée de Grenoble, bequest of Agutte-Sembat, 1923 © Musée de Grenoble.

  • Paul Gauguin, with Émile Bernard. Earthly Paradise, 1888. The Art Institute of Chicago, through prior gift of Henry Morgen, Ann G. Morgen, Meyer Wasser, and Ruth G. Wasser; restricted gift of Edward M. Blair.

    Paul Gauguin, with Émile Bernard. Earthly Paradise, 1888. The Art Institute of Chicago, through prior gift of Henry Morgen, Ann G. Morgen, Meyer Wasser, and Ruth G. Wasser; restricted gift of Edward M. Blair.

  • Paul Gauguin. Merahi metua no Tehamana (Tehamana Has Many Parents or The Ancestors of Tehamana), 1893. The Art Institute of Chicago, gift of Mr. and Mrs. Charles Deering McCormick.

    Paul Gauguin. Merahi metua no Tehamana (Tehamana Has Many Parents or The Ancestors of Tehamana), 1893. The Art Institute of Chicago, gift of Mr. and Mrs. Charles Deering McCormick.

  • Paul Gauguin. Mahana no atua (Day of the God), 1894. The Art Institute of Chicago, Helen Birch Bartlett Memorial Collection.

    Paul Gauguin. Mahana no atua (Day of the God), 1894. The Art Institute of Chicago, Helen Birch Bartlett Memorial Collection.

  • Paul Gauguin. Manaò tupapaú (Spirit of the Dead Watching), 1892. Collection Albright-Knox Art Gallery, Buffalo, New York; A. Conger Goodyear Collection, 1965, 1965:1. Photograph by Tom Loonan.

    Paul Gauguin. Manaò tupapaú (Spirit of the Dead Watching), 1892. Collection Albright-Knox Art Gallery, Buffalo, New York; A. Conger Goodyear Collection, 1965, 1965:1. Photograph by Tom Loonan.

  • Paul Gauguin. Tehura, also called Head of Tahitian Woman or Teha’amana, about 1892. Musée d’Orsay, Paris, donation of Mme Huc de Monfreid, 1951.

    Paul Gauguin. Tehura, also called Head of Tahitian Woman or Teha’amana, about 1892. Musée d’Orsay, Paris, donation of Mme Huc de Monfreid, 1951.

  • Paul Gauguin. Self-Portrait with Hat, winter 1893–94. Musée d’Orsay, Paris, acquired with the participation of an anonymous Canadian donation, 1966.

    Paul Gauguin. Self-Portrait with Hat, winter 1893–94. Musée d’Orsay, Paris, acquired with the participation of an anonymous Canadian donation, 1966.

  • Paul Gauguin. Soyez mystérieuses (Be Mysterious), 1890. Musée d’Orsay, Paris.

    Paul Gauguin. Soyez mystérieuses (Be Mysterious), 1890. Musée d’Orsay, Paris.

  • Paul Gauguin. Maison du jouir (House of Pleasure). Left to right: Soyez mystérieuses (Be Mysterious); Nude woman and small dog; Maison du jouir; Nude woman and tree with red fruits; Soyez amoureuses et vous serez heureuses (Be in Love and You Will Be Happy), 1901–02. Musée d’Orsay, Paris.

    Paul Gauguin. Maison du jouir (House of Pleasure). Left to right: Soyez mystérieuses (Be Mysterious); Nude woman and small dog; Maison du jouir; Nude woman and tree with red fruits; Soyez amoureuses et vous serez heureuses (Be in Love and You Will Be Happy), 1901–02. Musée d’Orsay, Paris.

  • Paul Gauguin. Vase in the Form of Leda and the Swan, 1887–1888. Private collection.

    Paul Gauguin. Vase in the Form of Leda and the Swan, 1887–1888. Private collection.

  • Paul Gauguin. Vision of the Sermon (Jacob Wrestling with the Angel), 1888. Scottish National Gallery, Edinburgh.

    Paul Gauguin. Vision of the Sermon (Jacob Wrestling with the Angel), 1888. Scottish National Gallery, Edinburgh.

  • Paul Gauguin. Arearea (Joyousness), 1892. Musée d’Orsay, Paris, bequest of M. and Mme Lung, 1961.

    Paul Gauguin. Arearea (Joyousness), 1892. Musée d’Orsay, Paris, bequest of M. and Mme Lung, 1961.

  • Paul Gauguin. Portrait of the Artist with the Yellow Christ, 1890–91. Musée d’Orsay, Paris, acquired by the national museums with the participation of Philippe Meyer and a Japanese sponsorship coordinated by the newspaper Nikkei, 1994.

    Paul Gauguin. Portrait of the Artist with the Yellow Christ, 1890–91. Musée d’Orsay, Paris, acquired by the national museums with the participation of Philippe Meyer and a Japanese sponsorship coordinated by the newspaper Nikkei, 1994.

More on this story

The exhibition "Gauguin: Artist as Alchemist," is at the Art Institute of Chicago until Sept. 10.


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