Tuesday, May 26, 2009

The road to success

Ken Johnson begins his review in the NYT of a exhibition of Luis Meléndez paintings at the National Gallery of art thus:
Here is a time-tested recipe for success: fail at what you want to do, then do what you really can do.It worked for Luis Meléndez. He desperately sought appointment as a salaried court artist like his contemporary Francisco Goya, but his petitions to the king were rejected. So instead of producing unctuous portraits of nobles, grandiose history paintings and saccharine mythic scenes, he painted small, intensely realistic pictures of fruit, vegetables and kitchenware. Today he is considered the greatest still-life painter of 18th-century Spain.

Image from Wikipedia: "Still Life With Watermelons and Apples in a Landscape (1771)"