Few painters are as well-regarded as Cézanne, and few people know this as well as Phil Grabsky, Director of Exhibition on Screen's newly released film, Cézanne; Portraits of a Life.
Released in Australian cinemas on 20 September, the film places this painter as not only one of the greatest artists of all time - described by Picasso as "the father of us all" - but the film tries to centre on who this individual was through the exhibition of his portraits at the National Portrait Gallery, London, the Musee d'Orsay, Paris and the National Gallery of Art, Washington DC.
Talking about the film, Director Phil Grabsky says there has remained the idea that Cézanne is a difficult and challenging artist to get to know. "In Exhibition on Screen's Cézannes; Portraits of a Life we go into the depths, and found that the more I looked into his life, the more I came to like and revere his deep passion for art."
Explaining that he was an artist that was never quite satisfied with his work, Phil says this often results with the phenomena that the "more you looked at [Cézanne's] art, the more you found in it." Depicting the fantastic life story of the artist, who mingled with the likes of Vincent Van Gogh and Emile Zola, the fact that Cézanne could paint without thinking of the market, and so had the freedom to paint as he wished, led to a freedom in doing portraits alongside his lakes and forests and his beloved South of France, Aix en Provence.
Cézanne: Portraits of a Life Preview
Committed to his artwork, Cézanne was an artist that was relentless in his pursuit of perfection in his artwork, with one painting taking 100 sittings to do. "This continuous pursuit of perfection in his work is similar to that sense of drive with sportspeople or athletes", Phil says.
"Everyday there is going to be examples of distinctive capability and unique works, yet through the many years where our planet has created art, extraordinary and high-art, we should all be able to afford the time to see a film that defines what we as human beings are capable of - and 85 minutes in the company of Cézanne is time well spent".
Dates: 6 - 7 October
Location: Various cinemas in Melbourne
Duration: 85 mins
Cost: Admission costs for tickets apply