Monday, 7 February 2011

Esher in the Palace

I have to admit that I know very little about Maurits Cornelis Esher, which is a vast improvement on last week where I knew nothing about him at all. So when I wandered round to the Esher Museum in the Lange Voorhout palace, where Queen Emma lived until 1891, I had no idea what I was going to see.

Mr Esher (1898 - 1972) was the wild eyed bloke you see in on the right in an engraving he did of himself. In many of his prints he explores perspective and mathematical patterns but is probably most famous for his pictures of stairs that go round in a square apparently always upwards. For all I'd never heard of the fellow, I did recognise several of his pieces.

As I mentioned in the last blog, we arrived here a little too close to closing time to really do it justice. But on the plus side they did let me take pictures and have wonderfully unreflective glass on the pictures. Silly old me didn't take any note of the names of the pictures so you'll just have to do without. Neither for that matter did I photograph the building on the way in but I can assure you that for all it bears the title of palace, it was really just a great big town house - quite unexciting by Dutch standards.

He dabbled in the area of physical illusion as well

I've probably blown this one by sticking my camera into it but by the use of mirrors and repeating patterns this appears to be a hole which goes down (and up) for ever.

Almost every room in the palace contains a rather bizarre chandelier by Dutch artist Hans Van Bentem. Here are just 3.

Back to Esher to finish off with a couple of our favorites.


David McK said...

Fantastic! Must add that to my list of arty-oriented places to go visit, along with the likes of Salvador Dali's hoose.


Sandy's witterings said...

Definately worth a visit David, loads of stuff to look at. Hopefully be passing Old Salvidor place at somepoint in years to come, that would definately be worth popping in.

Hoorah for Wikipedia - I get lots of information from there.

Sinbad and I on the Loose said...

I've always been a fan of Esher since I was a little guy. Pure genius. Same with Dali. I've not seen that image with the bloke poking his camera into it before, so good that he did so as it gave a sense of scale. Yes, hooray for Wikipedia. I even donated to their fund raiser last month, and I am not one to do the likes of often. But I had a few bucks sitting in Paypal, so why not?

Sandy's witterings said...

The sense of scale from the bloke in the camera is the deceptive bit, the bloke is me taking the picture that you're looking at and the bottom of the illusion isn't much lower, if at all lower, than my feet.

Laoch of Chicago said...

Great stuff!

billy bagwash said...

now this is art, "there's just something about graphite and ink"

ps,, did you hear about the fire at the red lion ?

Becky said...

I had a book of Esher prints for a long time. I especially like the stairway ones. It sounds like a museum I would love to visit.

Sandy's witterings said...

Thanks people.
I did hear about the Red Lion Billy - half my dark side people drink in there. I'm believe it was a fire in the thatch and didn't cause too much damage in the long run.

The Glebe Blog said...

Some wonderful stuff from Mr Esher.So he's the man who invented the never ending stairs.I remember way back keeping the kids occupied trying to recreate them.