Posts Tagged ‘costume design’

Artist of the moment…….Leon Bakst


Leon Bakst was an internationally renown painter, costume,  and theater set designer. Leon Bakst was born in the year 1866 in what is now the country of Belarus.

The artist attended college at the Saint Petersburg Academy of Art in Russia.

Here a large selection of drawings and paintings that show Bakst’s skill at painting the figure and remarkable clothing:

Leon Bakst passed away in 1924.

In this clip we view more works by Bakst:

Price range information: Bakst worked frequently in watercolor and gouache. Prices range from $10,000 to $750,000.

If you enjoy the art of costumes and set designer be sure and check out my post on Erte, my favorite theater set and costume designer.


Artist of the moment…………Oskar Schlemmer


Oskar Schlemmer was an artist renown or his costume and theater design. Oskar Schlemmer was born in Stuttgart, Germany in the year 1888.

Schlemmer is associated with the Bauhaus movement. The artist’s parents both died when he was rather young and the artist supported himself from the age of 15 as an apprentice working with crafts such as inlay which is similar to working with mosaics.

The artist worked as a professor at the Bauhaus until the political situation was such that he resigned from teaching at the school.

Schlemmer also designed dancing performances. Here we see glimpses from well renown sequence of Schlemmer’s:

Below a wonderful montage of works by Schlemmer:

The artist’s works later in life were somewhat marred by the fact his paintings were obscured by the Nazi regime. In this regard I conser Schlemmer to be a precursor to Chinese artist Ai WeiWei. Both were thought of to be dissidents to their country’s current political structure.

Oskar Schlemmer passed away in 1943 at the age of 54 years old.

Price range information: Works range from $10,000 for a work in ink or pencil. The artist had a work sell at Christie’s Auction House for nearly $1.5 million dollars. Schlemmer worked in many mediums including watercolor and collage. The artist was an avid printmaker and lithographs start around $10,000.

Thanks  Nannus for sharing your comparisons with artist Denise Kupferschmidt. I can easily see the comparisons!


Artist of the moment……..Carlos Merida

Carlos Merida was born in Guatemala City, Guatemala in the year 1891. Merida is associated with the abstract and cubist movements. Merida was a costume and theater set designer, dance choreographer, teacher, painter, and muralist painter.

Growing the artist took music and art lessons, Merida loved to play the piano. After having some difficulties with hearing loss Merida gave up the piano and took his father’s advice and switched to painting.

Growing up in Guatemala Merida had little exposure to art so and after having his first solo exhibition in 1910 he left for Paris, France and remained there for four years. Merida became associated with the leading artists of the day in Paris including Picasso.

Merida had his first solo show in 1920.

Merida had a daughter that was a dancer. Merida felt dance could express what painting could not and used helped to fund and start a dancing school that his daughter helped to run.

Carlos Merida passed away in 1984 at the age of 94 years old.

Price range information: Merida worked in many mediums including crayon, lithography, watercolor, pastel and gouache with prices ranging from $3,000 to $70,000.

What a talented artist who just enjoyed creating be it  choreography for dancers, theater set and costume design, a small oil painting, or a very large mural. Merida excelled at painting just about anything.


Artist of the moment….Pavel Tchelitchew

Pavel Tchelitchew was a fantastic painter of the figure born in Russia in the year 1898 near Moscow, Russia in a city called Kaluga. His family was very wealthy and he didn’t attend school but was tutored privately.

When comparing his artistic career one artist that I profiled comes to mind, Erte, another Russian artist born in 1890. Both made great works of art in addition to designing theater sets and costumes.

In this clip a great montage of works by Tchelitchew. Its interesting to note that a theme in the 19th century was to paint figures that never made eye contact with the viewer. It makes for high emotional content as people are far more relaxed, people are more themselves, when they think no one is watching them.

In this clip more works from the master.

First U.S. show was in 1930 at the Museum of Modern Art in New York city.

For seven years worked for a magazine titled View which specialized in Surrealist paintings.

Included in the collection of the Museum of Modern Art in New York.

Became a citizen of the United States in 1952.

Pavel Tchelitchew passed away in 1957 at the age of 58 years old.

The artist worked in many mediums. Gouache works range $5,000 to $75,000. Oils can range from the low six figures to $400,000. Watercolors range $10,000 to $80,000.  Works in ink range $1,000 to $8,000. Works in pencil cost $1,000 to $5,000.

Another artist that I am reminded when looking at his drawings is Bev Doolittle. Doolittle is a world famous best known for her cleverly hiding figures in trees and other various locales of the landscapes. Tchelitchew was superb at hiding animals in his landscapes if you look closely. I never thought of Doolittle as a Surrealist painter but here is a great montage showing how easily she hides figures and animals in her paintings.



Artist of the moment….French artist Georges Barbier…

Georges Barbier was a great illustrator and fine artist who was born in Nantes, France in 1882. Barbier took part in his first exhibition at the age of 29 in 1911.

The artist had a great career in a variety of artistic director positions such as head of theater and he even designed dresses and other dance costumes. The artist worked with the internationally known Folies Berger.  Barbier also dabbled in jewelry design. The artist also designed wall paper and glass.

For his college education the artist attended the Ecole des Beaux Arts in Paris, France. Here he was part of a group that was given the title “The Knights  of the

Bracelet. ” The group had a reputation for being flamboyant in both their public appearance and mannerisms.

A great selection of posters and prints of the artist here. I don’ t want to sell you anything, but rather to see how versatile the artist was with his genre. He was certainly at the front of illustrating the upper class lifestyle. His style is considered Art-Deco. I prefer “Gatsby like!”–a452/georges-barbier-posters.htm

A clip of some of Barbier’s erotic type of work. I find it similar to present day artist Michael Bergt. Bergt uses egg tempera to bring Greek fables to life. Many Surrealistic visions of creatures like the Centaur, half horse and half man.

A great selection of the complete ouvre of the artist. You can see the artist’s style for flair and sort of “Gatsby” like presentation of large groups celebrating and dancing about.

When the artist passed away in 1932, he was atop the profession. He was already so successful seeing his designs appear on wall paper, glass, and childrens books. He illustrated many books over his career. Barbier also penned essays and illusrations for a hit magazine called “Vogue”  on fashion published in France from 1912 to 1925. When French fashion was at the peak of European style, this magazine was a must read and he its best known artist.

I enjoy the artist for his fashion illustrations the most, though he was great at anything with the female figure. His indoor dining rooms are similar to Lindsay Goodwin. He went into such fine detail in his works its as if the viewer is looking at a very lively photograph! Very good with color as well. I enjoy looking at fashion designs and when Isaac Mizrahi used to have his show on the fashion network, my favorite part of the show was watching him sketch some designs. I wish more artists would do so.

Try drawing or painting a fashion illustration.