Monday, 26 January 2009
HOT: Courtauld Gallery, Somerset House, Strand WC2R 1LA
The Courtauld Gallery has been on my to-do list for a while, so I took the opportunity to don some disguise and explore it on an admission-free Monday. On the ground floor there were some dimly lit religious Renaissance works and the top floor contained some brilliantly dynamic Kandinsky and forgettable watercolours. So the main attraction (for me) were the light-filled Impressionist and Post-Impressionist galleries. I loved the colourful movement juxtaposed with a sad serenity in Manet's last great painting "Bar at the Folies-Bergère"; the interesting diagonal composition of the diaphanous ballerinas in Degas' "Two dancers on a stage", and most of all, the shimmering vibrancy of Monet's "Autumn effect at Argenteuil", perfectly displayed against a sunlit window.