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The Courtauld Gallery, London, Room 3: infographics

4 October, 2010

Often I find the number of the exhibits in a museum overwhelming; they are too many in so many rooms that you literally should jog around them if you want to have a rough idea about what the museum includes. Personally I prefer to focus on just one room and in many cases just one work/item every time I visit (especially when I know that I have the opportunity to visit the place again).

The Courtauld Gallery, in London, is described as ‘one of the finest small museums in the world’ and although I doubt the ‘small’ bit of the description it really has some stunning Impressionist paintings.

For this set of infographics I have focused on Room 03 of the Gallery which is on the 1st floor. At the moment Manet’s A Bar at the Folies-Bergère is probably the most famous painting of the room.

Perhaps these infographics are more useful and meaningful when you are in the room itself but still they can give you an idea of what is in there and help you identify relations between the artists, the paintings/works and the places that inspired them.

An infographic (floor plan, time line and doughnut chart) related to Room 3, The Courtauld Gallery, London

Click on the image to enlarge it

On the first infographic there is a floor plan of the room and a time line of various events related to the room and its exhibits.

The room has 16 works (15 paintings and 1 sculpture) created by 5 artists: Cézanne, Gauguin, Manet, Monet and Pissarro; all of them were French. It is easy to see that the room is dominated by Cézanne’s works (9 out of 16 works are his) so we could easily talk about ‘Cézanne’s room’.

Time line

From bottom to top there is an indication of when the artists of the room lived (Pissarro was the oldest while Monet lived the longest and was the last to die) with some information (extracted from the captions in the room) related to their lives. On the centre there are the dates when they created the works of art. Below the central grey line there are the dates of works by Pissarro, Monet and Gauguin while above it there are the dates of Cézanne’s and Manet’s paintings. Further up (top) the dates of some historical events are mentioned.

Map of France & Map of the World

Click on the image to enlarge it

As all the artists of the room were French, most of their inspiration came from France. On a map of France cities and places like Paris, Osny, Éragny and Normandy are highlighted. For each, we show the related works of art in Room 3 of the Courtauld Gallery. As one of the paintings was created by Gauguin in Tahiti, on a smaller map of the world, Tahiti and France are highlighted.

Table of the works

No Title
Materials Signed
1 The Etang des Soeurs, Osny Cézanne 1875 (circa) Landscape Oil on canvas No
2 Farm in Normandy Cézanne 1882 (?) Landscape Oil on canvas No
3 Tall trees at the Jas De Bouffan Cézanne 1883 (circa) Landscape Oil on canvas No
4 La Montagne Sainte-Victoire Cézanne 1887 (circa) Landscape Oil on canvas Yes
5 A Bar at the Folies-Bergère Manet 1882 Oil on canvas Yes (+dated)
6 Le Lac d’Annecy Cézanne 1896 Landscape Oil on canvas No
7 Man with a Pipe Cézanne 1892-1895 (circa) Portrait Oil on canvas No
8 The Card Players Cézanne 1892-1895 (circa) Oil on canvas No
9 Still Life with Plaster Cast Cézanne 1894 (circa) Still Life Oil on paper laid on board No
10 Le déjeuner sur l’herbe Manet 1867 Oil on canvas No
11 La Lavandière (The Laundress) Pissarro 1893 (circa) Oil and pastel (?) on canvas Yes
12 The Haystacks Gauguin 1889 Oil on canvas Yes (+dated)
13 Te Rerioa (The Dream) Gauguin 1897 Oil on canvas Yes (+dated, titled & located)
14 Route Tournante (The Winding Road) Cézanne 1904 (circa) Landscape Oil on canvas No
15 Vase of flowers Monet 1881-1882 (circa) Still Life Oil on canvas Yes
16 Portrait of Mette Gauguin Gauguin 1877 Portrait (Head / Sculpture) Marble Yes

Museums and Galleries as living organisms

The works on display of museums and galleries change perhaps more often than you imagine; even if it is their ‘permanent’ collections/exhibitions. So if you visited the Courtauld Gallery – Room 3, let’s say in 2009, do not expect that all the works you saw then, will be present the next time you visit.

From the 16 works of art in the room, Cézanne’s Route Tournante (The Winding Road) was put on display sometime just between 13 and 20 September, replacing Gaugin’s Nevermore which will be on display at Tate Modern between 30 September 2010 and 16 January 2011.

Before that happened, Pissarro’s La Lavandière (The Laundress) replaced Rousseau’s Toll gate (sometime between 26 July and 13 September 2010).

If you would like to see an even older layout (and the works) of Room 3, please click here.

Chances are that soon there will be another change: The Card Players and perhaps the Man with a Pipe will move one floor up to a new exhibition titled ‘Cézanne’s Card Players‘ which will last between 21 October 2010 and 16 January 2011.

The Samouel Courtauld Trust, The Courtauld Gallery, London: on-site visits (field research) + website
The Courtauld Gallery, London

Many thanks to Tim Thomas for his valuable feedback.

One Comment leave one →
  1. Bee permalink
    5 January, 2011 11:22 am

    This is very useful, I always look out for graphic plans in these places as I am often confused for exactly this reason – too many rooms, corners, too much to see:-) Also the details like dates of the artists, etc are amazing as I think it’s quite important to recognise the different periods and how they influenced their arts. It can be confusing. They should be giving out leaflets with this info to everyone, it would be so useful for people like me who want to see and read every tiny bit of an exhibition!!!:-)

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