Century of Light at National Gallery Singapore: Two Exhibitions, Two Perspectives

Madame Darras by Auguste Renoir

Century of Light at National Gallery Singapore is a special showcase that brings together two very different but complementary exhibitions under the unifying premise of the 19th century, a period of change and innovation.

At Century of Light, visitors can view an exhibition with works by Southeast Asian artists, Raden Saleh and Juan Luna and another by leading painters from the Impressionist movement.

The two Century of Light exhibitions, Between Worlds: Raden Saleh and Juan Luna, and Colours of Impressionism: Masterpieces from the Musée d’Orsay take visitors back in time to the 1800s and present two parallel, yet contrasting stories on the development of art during that period of time.

Between Worlds: Personal Stories in Art

Between Worlds: Raden Saleh and Juan Luna feels like the more personal of the two exhibitions under Century of Light at National Gallery Singapore. It traces the story of Indonesian artist Raden Saleh and Filipino artist Juan Luna who both left their homelands to Europe in pursuit of their dreams.

Raden Saleh Lion Hunt, Century of Light
Raden Saleh, Lion Hunt. 1841. Oil on canvas. Collection of Latvian National Museum of Art

In the “world” of Europe, Raden Saleh developed his own style that would lead him to master the Orientalist hunting scenes that he would become known for.

Juan Luna won acclaim for his paintings such as Cleopatra, which visitors can view at the exhibition. His path would eventually lead him towards nationalistic duties, using his prominence to further the cause of the Philippines.

The artworks displayed at Century of Light’s Between Worlds: Raden Saleh and Juan Luna are drawn from museums worldwide. It provides an unprecedented opportunity to view the works of these two early Southeast Asian artists in a single location.

Colours of Impressionism: Light Movement

Colours of Impressionism: Masterpieces from the Musée d’Orsay showcases art from Paris’ famed Musée d’Orsay. The exhibition features over 60 works from instantly-recognisable names such as Monet, Renoir and Cézanne. These artists lived and worked in the late 19th century, at around the same time period as Saleh and Luna. Through their convictions, they developed what is considered as the first modern art movement.

La Pie (The Magpie), Claude Monet
La Pie (The Magpie), Claude Monet

At Century of Light exhibition Colours of Impressionism: Masterpieces from the Musée d’Orsay, visitors can view how Impressionist artists broke away from traditional styles of painting and ushered in light and colour to their paintings. Through the use of colours and techniques like quick brush strokes, their revolutionised what could be considered art.

Highlights at the exhibition include Claude Monet’s Le Bassin aux nymphéas, harmonie rose (Water Lily Pond, Pink Harmony) and Auguste Renoir’s Gabrielle à la rose (Gabrielle with a Rose).

Marvel at a Century of Light

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Colours of Impressionism, Century of Light at National Gallery SingaporeThe two exhibitions presented under National Gallery Singapore’s Century of Light provide an opportunity to view masterpieces in a variety of different styles and techniques.

Between Worlds: Raden Saleh and Juan Luna is being held at the Singtel Special Exhibition Gallery C while Colours of Impressionism: Masterpieces from the Musée d’Orsay occupies Singtel Special Exhibition Gallery A & B.

Century of Light runs from 16 November 2017 to 11 March 2018.

Tours, talks and activities have been planned in conjunction with two exhibitions. The two exhibitions are ticketed separately.

RELATED: Between Worlds at National Gallery Singapore

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