Delacroix at the National Gallery, London SW1

160412 Delacroix 02 for web

The title Delacroix and the rise of modern art gives you a clue that this exhibition is as much about Delacroix’s influence on other artists as about his paintings themselves.

160412 Delacroix 01 for web

It started with works that had influenced Delacroix himself and went on to show Delacroix alongside the work of other artists who drew directly from him. There was a fascinating Van Gogh vase of flowers which seemed to stand half-way between Delacroix’s romanticism and full-on Van Gogh in sunflower mode.

My taste tends more towards the Impressionists and post-Impressionists than to Delacroix himself, but it was fascinating to see how themes were reworked and echo through the years. Of course, that just confirms that view that there is nothing new under the sun; it’s all been done before. But Delacroix has an answer to that too:

“Oh! Young artist, you want a subject? Everything is a subject; the subject is yourself.”