Dear Cleo 18 12 07

Dearest Cleo

Well it is almost the weekend and I am looking forward to seeing you again. I was a bit upset with myself, for assuming from the books I had read, that the Blue Rider was an all male affair.

Well every day is a school day, today I learned that The Blue Rider included two female artists, Gabrielle Munter and Marianne Von Werefkin. As promised Amazon delivered the book I ordered. It was a beautiful book, lavishly illustrated, with not too much writing so that it was quick to read. It contained many works by Kandinsky, Macke and Marc that I am now quite familiar with, but also some by Munter and Werefkin.

Gabriele Munter was a founder member of The Blue Rider, she was Kandinsky’s muse, companion and lover throughout his pre First World War career and they parted when Kandinsky returned to Russia in 1914. When I flicked through the book after it was delivered, I assumed her paintings were works by Kandinsky that I had not previously seen, but on reading the book I began to appreciate her work. Like many of the early twentieth century artists she dabbled in a number of isms over the course of her career but my favourite was Streetcar in Munich, the central streetcar occupies the focus of the golden section and the colours are pure magic.

Marianne Von Werefkin studied under the Russian Realist Painter Ilya Repin and again her works can be attributed to a number of early Twentieth Century Art Movements. She was a latecomer to The Blue Rider but for me her stand out work is Tragic mood, looking at the picture you can feel the woman’s need to be alone with her thoughts and feelings whilst her partner stares uncomprehendingly from beside their home.

I wasn’t able to find an internet version of Streetcar in Munich but I will show you the picture in the book when you come round.

My love as always

Mickos xx



Kurster, U. (2016) Kandinsky Marc & Der Blaeu Reiter. Basle: Foundation Beyeler

Jansen, I. (2017) Gabriele Munter. London: Prestel Publishing

Internet research

All accessed 06 December 2018

Dear Cleo 18 11 28

Dearest Cleo

I was talking to your mum today and heard that your new bed has come for your room and that she is picking up your new bedding on Thursday evening, I think you might be cosy and snug in there until you are at least a teenager. Me I am reflecting on the Miro exhibition I saw in Paris

Although Miro is grouped with the Surrealists, he himself would not have accepted this grouping, he was at heart a colourist. He avoided being part of a group or school even though at times his paintings had a hint of Surrealism, Fauvism and Cubism. He fiercely maintained his independent stance his whole life.

The exhibition I attended at the Grand Palais in Paris was a retrospective of his whole career starting with his early realist work, dabbling with various isms and on to his final pieces from the Blue series of the 1960’s and onwards to the eighties the exhibition was probably a slightly extended version of that held in the same venue in 1974.

The retrospective aspect made quite an impression on me, it was almost as if once he could do something he would move on and try something new, in a way that is how I am feeling doing this course, once I can do something and prove to myself I can do it well I feel the need to move to pastures new.

His later paintings after he got his new studio in Palma were mural sized and very imposing for that, but that does not take away from his earlier paintings which were smaller as he lived in a house. Maybe that is something else I can look forward to in the future. It is funny the constraints that are placed on a painter that you wouldn’t imagine unless you really stopped to consider.

Miro claimed his inspiration came from his dreams but he also confessed to staring at walls and ceilings his painting Harlequins Carnival emphasises the patterns on the wall this, is reminiscent of Leonardo and could give an enterprising curator the opportunity to hang the two artists together.

Figure 1 Harlequins Carnival by Joan Miro

A Miro is instantly recognisable and could only ever be a Miro.

Enjoy your new bedroom

My Love as always

Mickos xx





Mink, J,  (2016) Miro:  The poet among the Surrealists. Kohl: Taschen


Tate (s.d) Joan Miro At:  (accessed 28/11/18)

Wikipedia (s.d.) Joan Miro At: (accessed 28/11/18)

Guggenhiem (s.d.) Joan Miro At: (accessed 28/11/18)

MoMA(s.d.) Joan Miro At: (accessed 28/11/18)

Foundation Joan Miro (s.d.) Joan Miro At: (accessed 28/11/18)