Discovering : Briton Rivière

The TATE Britain. The name of it invokes beauty, creation, wonders. With art pieces from 1500 to today, all displayed in this ancient prison, it’s a no-brainer for any art enthousiastes in London. Most artists exposing are British, many of which I had never heard of. That included  Briton Rivière. 
My dear Briton… 

Born in 1840 in London, Rivière explore the animals displays of emotions and their intriguing relationship with their environment and us, humans. Since animals were massively depicted at that time in paintings, it isn’t surprising that you’ve never heard of him. In theory, he didn’t revolutionised painting, but he did, in my humble opinion, captured more than simply a subject. He quickly became one the most famous animals painter in the UK with pieces emotional charged. 

 When I walked in this random little room in the Tate, my back facing his work, I was took by utterly surprise

Beyond Man’s Footsteps. Breathtaking sunset on the Artic iced lands with an intrigued polar bear gazing at the orange, red, purple hues skies. Perhaps was the bear enjoying the view, perhaps was he contemplating the fragility of the landscape. 

As a Canadian, this painted representation of my country was as sweet as it was sad

Surprisingly, Rivière never set foot in the Artic, never saw a real polar bear. Yet, he captured the essence of what a cold, desolated, mesmerising and delicate world the North is. 

It’s not everyday that a artwork moves you to tears, makes you shivers. 

I was happy to found more of his artworks, since they all depict the intense emotions that animals feel towards one another, humans or their surroundings. 

As the master appears to be in despair, his loyal dog stands by him

Mr. Rivière, I hope that, wherever death took you, you know how much your work is still appreciated and inspiring. 

So thank you. 


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