“In the Forest of Fontainebleu: Painters and Photographers from Corot to Monet”

On view through Sunday, October 19, 2008 at the Audrey Jones Beck Building of the MFAH

“A tree is an edifice, a forest a city, and among all the forests, the Forest of Fontainebleau is a monument,” Victor Hugo wrote in 1872, expressing the love and admiration of this magical place that he shared with his fellow Parisians and with generations of French landscape painters in particular.

This exhibition transports the viewers deep into the shady glens and dramatic gorges, over the rugged terrain of giant boulders, and to the edges marshes that make up the varied topography of this former royal hunting domain which became the cradle and crucible of French landscape painting.

The exhibition traces the steps of three generations of painters who sought out Fontainebleau as their ‘natural studio’ between the 1820s and 1870s. Located only 35 miles from Paris, virtually unspoiled and uninhabited yet easily accessible, it was the ideal site to develop plein air painting in France. Corot’s Little Easel Carrier, 1823-24, is not only an early and astonishingly fresh example, but also illustrates the logistics of working out of doors. Equipped with portable easels, folding umbrellas and stools, the artists set out from one of the surrounding villages like Barbizon or Chailly to grasp nature as she revealed herself directly before their eyes. Although the choice of motifs, scale, sense of color as well as brushwork techniques change from one generation to the next, the feeling of immediacy and the freshness of natural phenomena closely observed prevail throughout. Grouped together as the Barbizon School, painters like Rousseau, Daubigny, and Courbet took the genre of French landscape painting to new heights in a movement which was to culminate in the light-filled canvases of the young impressionists, beautifully represented by Monet’s The Bodmer Oak, Fontainebleau Forest, 1865.

Besides natural aspects of the forest, which fall under topography, weather, rocks and trees, village life is explored in depth. No one has ever captured the dignity of people working the land with more sensitivity and empathy than Jean-François Millet, whose affinity for village life was so great that he settled in Barbizon. His delicate pastels of the villagers, such as Shepherdess Knitting, outside the Village of Barbizon, 1860-62, have become icons of a simpler, better life. Although most artists continued to live in Paris, during the summer months as many as one hundred would descend upon Babizon, transforming it literally into the ‘colony of colonies.’ During the years of the hey-day of the painters’ colony a number of pioneers in the new medium of photography, including Gustave LeGray, Eugène Cuvelier, and John B. Green, first explored landscape photography in the Forest of Fontainebleau. The comparison of Cuvelier’s Beech Tree near the Bodmer, of the early 1860s, with Monet’s work reveals both the close proximity and the creative rivalry between artists working in different media, both inspired by the same monumentality to be found in the Forest of Fontainebleau.

TFAA Art Recognition Award and Auction

Co-sponsored by Paper City

October 15, 2008

Over 25 artists participated and over 30 art pieces were auctioned at the 1st TFAA Art Recognition Award and Auction. The goal is to raise funds to support the TFAA, so that TFAA can continue to promote artistic and cultural exchanges between Texas and France. Part of the net proceeds was donated to a local charity that supports artists, Project Row Houses. Live auction was conducted by a professional auctioneer from Sotheby’s New York.

Award presentation: 

1st price winner, a 10 day artistic residency trip to Paris, was handed to daniel-kayne by city council member, Peter Brown and Honorary Chair, Lynn Waytt

2nd Place winner: Terrell James

3rd Place winner: Jamal Cyrus

Exhibiting artists were selected by a distinguished Selection Committee:

  • Social and Fine Arts Editor of Paper City, Catherine Anspon
  • Curator of Contemporary Art Museum Houston, Valerie Cassel Oliver
  • Cultural Attaché of France, Mr. Dominique Chastres
  • Vice President of TFAA, Mrs. Rania Daniel
  • Former Director of CAMH, James Harithas
  • Curator and art advisor in Paris, France, Marc Pottier
  • Curator of the Blaffer Gallery, Claudia Schmuckli
  • Curator of The Menil Collection, Franklin Sirmans
  • Artistic Director, Fotofest, Wendy Watress

Participating Artists:

Artists Gallery







Making A Mark

International exhibit of art by children touched by cancer and blood disorders

The Periwinkle Foundation Presents Texas Children’s Cancer Center’s Making A Mark is an exhibit of art and creative writing by children touched by cancer and blood disorders featuring Régine Gaud & Gérard Visser.

Now in its 18th year, Making A Mark is part of Texas Children’s Cancer Center Arts in Medicine program – a program that provides enjoyable, educational and meaningful artistic opportunities for patients and their families. Making A Mark is open to children from all across the globe.

Making A Mark was adopted by The Periwinkle Foundation, an organization committed to developing and providing programs that positively change the lives of children, young adults, and families who are challenged by cancer and other life threatening illnesses at Texas Children’s Hospital, in 2001.

 For 25 years, The Periwinkle Foundation has partnered with Texas Children’s Cancer Center to provide unique, family-centered programs. In addition to Making A Mark, The Periwinkle Foundation also provides camps and recreational activities, including Camp Periwinkle, a summer camp designed specifically for the special needs of cancer patients. For more information on The Periwinkle Foundation, visit http://www.periwinklefoundation.org/.

For more information on the Arts in Medicine program at Texas Children’s Cancer Center, visit http://www.txccc.org/.




  • Stanford and Joan Alexander Foundation
  • Clayton Dabney Foundation for Kids with Cancer
  • Sponsor, Arts In Medicine Digital Photography Program
  • Albert and Ethel Herzstein Charitable Foundation
  • Houston Junior Woman’s Club
  • Texan-French Alliance for the Arts
  • Elise C. Young
  • Watercolor Art Society

In-Kind Donors

  • Academy
  • Any Occasion
  • Art and Frame, Etc.
  • Trixie Bond
  • Community Arts Collective
  • The Junior League of Houston, Inc.
  • Kimberly Lucas
  • Metropolitan Transit Authority of Harris County
  • Mood Indigo
  • Sabrina Reynolds
  • Three Brothers Bakery of Houston

Click HERE to see the full article in Press Room 2008 Folder

Click HERE to see the full video

Reference: www.myfoxhouston.com

6th Annual Young Jazz Artists’ Music Camp

International Student Musician Exchange Program between Bordeaux, France & Houston, Texas

The camp includes daily classroom instruction, ensemble playing, and private master classes by professional musicians and jazz educators.

Limited partial scholarships are provided by:

Eligibility Requirements

  • Applicants must be between the ages of thirteen (13) and nineteen (19).
  • Applicants must pass a music reading and/or improvisation audition.
  • Applicants must agree to regularly attend rehearsals and performances.
  • Note: Applicants who are enrolled in a secondary school music program will be allowed to give that program precedence over Young Sounds’ functions. Young Sounds is intended to compliment rather conflict with existing music programs.

Benefits to Participants

  • Participants will receive professional training while being associated with the University’s Civic Jazz Orchestra, top quality professional musicians, and the world’s largest organization of professional performers.
  • Participants will perform concerts throughout the area. Some concerts will feature nationally and internationally known guest soloists such as Clark Terry, Kirk Whalum, Tony Campise, and Marvin Stamm. Previous performances include the Texas Jazz Festival in Corpus Christi, the Annual Kemah Boardwalk Jazz Festival and the bi-yearly International Musicians’ Association meeting in Las Vegas.
  • Participants will have an opportunity to participate in intensive rehearsal and clinic sessions with top professional musicians.

More information: www.uhd.edu/academic/colleges/humanities/arts_humanities

Telephone: 713-221-8574
email: wilsonr@uhd.edu

Report from Musique de Nuit, Bordeaux – in French only

The Gershwins’ “An American in Paris”: The World Premiere of a New Musical Comedy

May 29, 2008

French night at the Alley Theatre

The hilarious new musical comedy The Gershwins’ An American in Paris takes a behind-the-scenes look at the making of the legendary movie-musical.Reuniting Ken Ludwig, George Gershwin and Ira Gershwin – the team behind the Broadway smash Crazy For You – this new American musical tells the story of Michel Gerard, the greatest music hall singer in Paris. When Michel fails to turn up at Monumental Pictures’ Paris studio for the filming of a new musical, StudioHeadLouis Goldmansends his practical, no-nonsense secretary, Rebecca Klemm, to find the missing star – and when the legendary Parisian crosses swords with the indomitable American, nothing short of fireworks ensue. Don’t miss this blissful prequel to the famous movie, featuring some of the best-loved songs written by George and Ira Gershwin including: “’S Wonderful,” “They All Laughed,” “Stairway to Paradise” and many more.


Receive a discount on tickets with the promotion code TFAA


Words and Music by George Gershwin and Ira Gershwin
Book by Ken Ludwig
Musical Supervisor: Rob Berman
Choreography by Randy Skinner
Directed by Gregory Boyd
Hubbard Stage at the Alley Theatre

Da Camera: “Exiles in Paris, Part I”


Two concerts celebrating the City of Lights

Sponsorship by TFAA and its presenting partner TOTAL E&P, USA


Februrary 29, 2008, 8 pm

Zilkha Hall, Hobby Center for the Performing Arts


The works performed:

Pascal Dusapin  Two Walking for two female voices (texts by Gertrude Stein)

Gertrude Stein  If I Told Him: A Portrait of Picasso

Paul Bowles  Selected Songs

Virgil Thomson  Selected Songs and Portraits

James Joyce  Anna Livia Plurabelle from Finnegan’s Wake

Stephen Albert  To Wake the Dead


The singers and musicians were Lucy Shelton, soprano; Karol Bennett, soprano; Thomas Meglioranza, baritone; Laura Flax, clarinet/bass clarinet; Leone Buyse, flute/alto flute/piccolo; Aloysia Friedmann, violin/viola; Norman Fischer, cello; Timothy Hester, piano/harmonium; Sarah Rothenberg, piano.