German, 1881 - 1932
Courtesy Peter Nahum at The Leicester Galleries
"Theodor Baierl was born in Munich and studied at the Munich Academy under Franz von Stuck Feruerstein and Habermann. Baierl was an artist born out of his time. He passionately believed in the art, love sonnets and archaic harmonies of the Medieval era which in turn became the essence of his paintings. Though his pure colours and attention to detail mirror the art of the Quattrocento, Baierl was no copyist of the old masters. His compositions are very much a product of his own mind. It is for this reason that underlying these faux old masters can be found the symbolism of the Munich succession. Though not commenting directly on modern society, the art is a product of his time and his idealization of the past suggests a dissatisfaction with modern Germany and the monumental upheaval of the first world war.
The Decameron is a collection of a hundred stories in prose compiled by the Italian poet Boccaccio in the years 1349-51. The fictional framework of the collection describes how the stories were told by a company of ten gentle-ladies and gentlemen who decide to retreat from plague-ridden Florence and spend two weeks in the country. They spent their weekdays telling short stories to pass the time. Proceedings were organised by one member of the company who was elected anew every day. Many of the stories concern romantic love relations, and are told in a variety of serious and comic ways.
In his painting of the subject, couples wander arm in arm through shady groves of trees. The spatial concept of the figures to the landscape is reminiscent of an ancient tapestry, in which the story tellers glow with the luminosity of a medieval manuscript."
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