Article first published in Forbes Monaco July/August 2021 issue.
Opera Gallery Monaco presents its Masters Show featuring a curated selection of over 50 artworks by leading Modern, Post-War and Contemporary artists.
Under the continuous High Patronage of Prince Albert, this year’s Monaco Masters Show celebrates the spirit and genius of over 25 artists, whose insight and vision produced crowning achievements in art and culture over the past century. The annual summer exhibition prompts dialogue between paintings, works on paper and sculptures from eras and styles.
Throughout this selection operates a real journey through time and technique, from a cubist portrait by Pablo Picasso, whose strong lines echo Fernand Léger’s stunning Femmes tenant des fleurs (1954). Featuring more aethereal aesthetics, Marc Chagall’s lush bouquets complement André Brasilier’s free-rein landscapes. The strong, emblematic gestures of Pierre Soulages resemble the multichromatic ones of Jean-Paul Riopelle. The greatest names of Post-War art are, of course, represented, from the interlocking forms of Jean Dubuffet’s Hourloupe cycle to the standing mobile sculpture by Alexander Calder.
The works presented were all created by artists, who strove or still strive to renew art and to liberate it both from copying nature and blind adherence to academic traditions. Opera Gallery Monaco also reveals an exquisite selection of Columbian artist Fernando Botero, ranging from larger-than-life sculptures to still life, such as this Nature more à l’ananas (1988), featuring round and generous forms, the artist’s signature style. Colorful and whimsical sculptures by Niki de Saint Phalle seem to play with Keith Haring’s doodle-like silhouettes. An American Pop artist also has a place of honor in this selection, with the stunning portrait Kym (2006).
Featured artists also include Bernard Buffet, Joan Miró, Hans Hartung, Georges Mathieu, Simon Hantaï, Andy Warhol, Tom Wesselmann, George Condo, Robert Combas, Mel Bochner, Tony Cragg, Bernar Venet and Julian Opie. As mentioned in the May/June edition of Forbes Monaco, this summer is very active for Opera Gallery Monaco: alongside this exhibition, an open-air exhibition of monumental works by Spanish artist Manolo Valdés is in the beautiful settings of the Château Saint-Martin & Spa and of the Hotel du Cap-Eden-Roc. To celebrate this outstanding partnership, part of the gallery space presents paintings and sculptures by this exceptional artist particularly known for his unique way of drawing from art history and singular use of media.
This year’s edition marks a particularly meaningful anniversary in the history of the Monaco Masters Show. For the tenth consecutive year, Opera Gallery is pleased that a portion of the show’s proceeds will go to the Monegasque association Mission Enfance. This association of international relief, led by Patricia Husson, has dedicated its efforts for over 30 years to help distressed youth. The association’s main field of intervention is education and it operates directly on the field, alongside local teams, to provide access to education.