Volume 3, Number 9
New SegPlay® PC Patterns
There's two new SegPlay® PC pattern collections available this month.
The first set is In Awe of Autumn.
Autumn is one of the four annual seasons and ranges (in the Northern Hemisphere) from September 22th to December 21st. The exact times are measured by the Autumn equinox and the Winter solstice. Autumn is associated with many natural events including harvesting of crops, a cooling of temperatures, a graying of skies, and most noticeably, the changing colors of leaves.
In Awe of Autumn
The second new SegPlay®PC set available this month is Peter Paul Rubens - Flemish Baroque Painter.
Peter Paul Rubens (1577-1640) was a Flemish Baroque Painter living in Antwerp. He was a proponent of the Flemish art style, which included movement, color, and sensuality. He is well known for his religious altarpieces, portraits, landscapes, and history paintings of mythological and allegorical subjects. His travels to Italy and Spain allowed him to be influenced by other masters including Titian, Michelangelo, Raphael and Leonardo da Vinci.
Peter Paul Rubens - Flemish Baroque Painter
Its been a fun month getting settled in San Diego and also thinking about our future products. There's a whole bunch of technical challenges that we're starting to tackle including a new architecture for the next generation of SegPlay on the desktop. We have some great ideas for new features, many of which have been submitted by users.. stay tuned.
We're always looking for more appealing art pieces for our SegPlay® online paint by number collection. If you are an aspiring artist and am interested in setting up a free personal category on SegPlay to showcase some of your work in our fun paint by number world, drop us an email email@example.com
On a personal note, Segmation has moved! Segmation founders, Beth and Mark have completed a move from Walnut Creek, California to San Diego, California this summer. Thanks to our virtual Segmation team, we're able to continue developing new products, provide support and of course create our never-ending sets of patterns.
We hope you enjoyed reading this newsletter. Please feel free to pass it on to a friend or colleague. If you have any comments or suggestions about this newsletter, please drop us an email to: firstname.lastname@example.org.
-Mark & Beth
Artist Of The Month:
Peter Paul Rubens - Flemish Baroque Painter
Sir Peter Paul Rubens (June 28, 1577 – May 30, 1640) was a Flemish painter of the Baroque school who is considered one of the greatest artists of all time. His works combine Flemish realism with the freedom and sensuality of the Renaissance, and they had a tremendous influence on other Flemish artists. Rubens was unique as an artist in that he was also a diplomat and an important political figure.
Rubens was born in Siegen, Germany in 1577. He was the sixth child in a family of devoted Calvinists who had been forced to flee Antwerp. His father died in exile in 1587 and two years later his mother took the family back to Antwerp where she raised her children as Roman Catholics. Catholicism would become a dominant force in Rubens’ work.
In 1598, when he was just 21 years old, Rubens was admitted to the Antwerp painters’ guild. Two years later he traveled to Italy to study the works of the Renaissance masters. The Duke of Mantua, who had a splendid collection of paintings, hired him as court painter, and Rubens was able to study at first hand the works of Veronese, Tintoretto, Titian and Caravaggio. The influence of their use of color and form would remain visible in his mature style for years to come. Even after Rubens returned to Antwerp, he would continue writing letters in Italian and he signed his name as “Pietro Paolo Rubens.”
The Duke of Mantua sent Rubens to Rome in 1601 to make copies of great Italian works and it was there that he obtained his first important commission for a Roman church: an altarpiece known as St. Helena with the True Cross.
In 1603 Rubens was sent on his first diplomatic mission: to deliver gifts from the Duke of Mantua to King Philip III of Spain. This journey not only gave him a unique opportunity to see the works of Titian and Raphael in the royal collection, but was also to be the first of many such missions combining art and diplomacy.
In 1608 Rubens received word that his mother was dying and he left Italy immediately. By the time he reached Antwerp his mother had already passed away.
Although Rubens had every intention of returning to Italy, a country he considered his spiritual home, success tied him to Antwerp. His reputation had gone before him and, aged 33 he became court painter to the acting rulers of the Spanish Netherlands, the Archduke Albert and the Archduchess Isabella. Rubens was so successful that the Archduke granted him permission to keep his studio in Antwerp instead of being based at the court in Brussels. But success came with a price; Rubens would never be free to return to Italy.
In 1609 Rubens married Isabella Brant with whom he would have three children. The commissions flooded in, requiring Rubens to hire assistants and apprentices, the most famous of which was Anthony Van Dyck.
Between 1621 and 1630, Rubens undertook a number of diplomatic duties for Archduke Ferdinand and Archduchess Isabella, including negotiating peace treaties between the Spanish Netherlands and the Dutch Republic, and between England and Spain. Both Charles I of England and Philip IV of Spain knighted him. Charles I also asked him to decorate the ceiling of the Whitehall Palace Banqueting Hall, and Cambridge University granted him an honorary degree.
Rubens returned to Antwerp in 1630, four years after the death of his first wife. At the age of 53, he remarried to Helene Fourment, sixteen years old and the daughter of an Antwerp colleague. Helene was the inspiration for the sensual, voluptuous female nudes in his later works. The couple had five children.
In his last years, Rubens retired to the country estate he had purchased in 1635. He devoted himself to painting and to caring for his young family. He died at the age of 64 after suffering from painful arthritis and was buried in Antwerp.
Art in the News:
Stolen Artwork Returned to Museum – in the Mail!
In what must be one of the strangest art heists ever, the thieves decided to return a stolen painting... by mail!
Two Russian paintings had been stolen from the Nicholas Roerich Museum in New York City on June 28. On August 14 the museum received a strange package in the mail. Upon opening the plain manila envelope, museum officials discovered to their amazement that it contained one of the stolen works, Talung Monastery, by obscure Russian artist Roerich. The envelope even had a return address on it.
The other stolen work is still missing.
Warhol’s Michael Jackson Breaks the Record
Pop art icon Andy Warhol’s painting of the King of Pop, Michael Jackson, was sold recently at a New York auction. The price paid for the painting is said to have been over $1 million according to Reuters, but the real figure has not been disclosed.
Although works by Warhol usually fetch around $17 million at auction, and the famous Lemon Marilyn reached an astounding $28 million, the portrait of Michael Jackson, painted in 1984, is important because it was produced to commemorate record-breaking sales of the album “Thriller.”
Outside the Lines
Renaissance artists never depicted women’s bare feet, or their toes in their paintings as this was forbidden by the ethical standards of the day.
Ancient Greek and Roman statues were once painted with bright colors, which faded or were washed away over the years. This practice only went out of fashion at the time of Michelangelo.