Thursday, January 28, 2010

New Work by Maarten Platje

The Agamemnon Passing Dover, 2010 oil on linen
31 1/2 x 39 3/8 inches

Cavalier Galleries is pleased to present the newest painting by Maarten Platje. This is his first work since completing his monumental painting, Council of War on Board 'De Zeven Provinciƫn', 10 June 1666. Maarten spent two years on Council of War which is slated to tour museums throughout Europe before coming to America, making The Agamemnon Passing Dover the first new painting available by Platje since 2008.

We heartily welcome this new and much awaited piece by the Dutch master of maritime art.

To see all of Maarten’s available inventory, click HERE.

As always, Maarten has completed exhaustive research on the Agamemnon, below is a complete history of the ship:

HMS Agamemnon 1781

The Agamemnon was one of seven ships built to the same design, drawn by the same naval architect that designed the famous Victory, Sir Thomas Slade. Agamemnon was the third to be built in the class, the first two being Ardent in 1762 and Raisonnable, laid down in 1763. Third was Agamemnon, followed by Belliqueux in 1778, Stately in 1779, Indefatigable in 1781 and finally the Nassau in 1783.

A Third Rate ship of the line like Agamemnon was an expensive warship to build. The construction of the ship’s hull with yards and masts fitted cost the Admiralty £20,579 (in today’s terms, approximately £12 million), a figure that did not include ordnance, sails, hemp, copper plating and other hardware.

For three of the most crucial decades in British naval history, Agamemnon always seemed to be at the centre of the action, having no less than eleven battle honours.

Agamemnon’s maiden voyage was on 9th July 1781 under the command of Captain Caldwell. Her first engagement was at the battle of Ushant on 12th December 1781 where the British fleet under Rear Admiral Kempenfelt defeated the French fleet and captured a significant number of ships, including the convoy the French were escorting. Agamemnon’s next major engagement was at the Battle of The Saints on 12th April 1782 where Rodney and Lord Hood’s fleet defeated Comte de Grasse’s French fleet.

On 7th January 1793, Nelson learned from Lord Hood that he had been chosen to command his first ship of the line, the Agamemnon. Although initially disappointed that he had not been given command of a 74, Nelson soon grew fond of Agamemnon. Nelson wrote to his wife, Fanny. She was, he said, "Without exception one of the finest ships in the fleet, with the character of sailing most remarkably well". He also wrote after twelve days in a storm in the Mediterranean in "Gales and lumping seas but in Agamemnon we mind them not; she is the finest ship I ever sailed in, and were she a 74, nothing should induce me to leave her while the war lasts". Even a French Commander Admiral Alemand expressed the view that Agamemnon was one of the fastest ships in the British Navy. That, coupled with Nelson’s inspirational command made her a very potent fighting unit.

Nelson commanded Agamemnon, or "eggs and bacon" as her crew affectionately called her, until 10th June 1796. In that time Nelson had proved to be a great Commander, tactically and physically.

It was during his command of Agamemnon that Nelson lost the sight of his right eye. When at the Siege of Calvi in 1794 during the morning of 10th July, Nelson was hit in the face and chest by splinters, stones and sand that were thrown up by an enemy shell that hit a battlement during a shore action. On 13th June 1796, Nelson’s broad pennant was transferred to the 74 gun Captain at anchor in San-Fiorenza bay. He watched the worn out Agamemnon sail to England for a much-needed refit. She was refitted from the bottom up at Chatham. When re-commissioned in 1797 she was ordered to join Admiral Duncan’s squadron off Yarmouth, which was keeping watch on the coast of Holland. She was immediately caught up in the naval mutinies of that year. Agamemnon was however considered untrustworthy by Richard Parker the leader of the Nore mutineers and had the guns of the mutinous ships trained on her to ensure she did not ‘blackleg’. Subsequently in the proceedings that followed all thirteen of Agamemnon’s crew who were tried were pardoned.

Agamemnon’s next major fleet engagement was the battle of Copenhagen on the 21st April 1801. Unfortunately she was grounded on a shoal for most of the action, but Nelson won the battle and a truce with Denmark was negotiated. On the 21st October 1805 Agamemnon took part in the battle of Trafalgar. When Nelsons favorite ship hove in sight a week before, with Nelsons old friend Sir Edward Berry in command of the Agamemnon, Nelson was delighted "Here comes that damned fool Berry! Now we shall have a battle." At Trafalgar the 27 British ships of the line defeated the Franco Spanish fleet of 33 line of battle ships in a victory that ensured British supremacy of the sea for the next 100 years. Later in Agamemnon’s career, she served in the West Indies, taking part in the battle of Santo Domingo, and then in South American waters. Agamemnon was wrecked in Maldonado Bay off the coast of Uruguay on the 16th June 1809. Divers have recently discovered the remains of HMS Agamemnon on the bottom of Maldonado Bay, after a six-year search by marine archaeologists. Strewn around the site are hundreds of copper plate, as well as a 24 pounder cannon, parts of the pumping devices as well as a significant amount of shot, bolts and copper nails. Also discovered was a silver pocket seal, complete with fob chain. On its face of translucent stone it bore a star shaped emblem with the name ‘Nelson’ in mirror image incised in a curve above.

Agamemnon was laid down at Bucklers Hard in May 1777 and launched on the 10th April 1781. Her dimensions were as follows;

Gun deck - 160 feet 2 inches
Keel- 131 feet 10 1/4 inches
Beam - 44 feet 5 inches
Tonnage - 1384 tons
Twenty-six, twenty-four pounder - Gun deck.
Twenty-six, eighteen pounder - Upper deck.
Twelve, nine pounder - Quarterdeck.
Complement - 491 officers and ratings.

Wednesday, January 20, 2010

New Exhibition

Contemporary Masters of the Classical Tradition

January 22, 2010 - February 7, 2010
Exhibition Dates: January 22 - February 7, 2010
405 Greenwich Avenue, Greenwich, CT

Cavalier Galleries is pleased to present a significant exhibition celebrating leaders in Contemporary Realism. The paintings and sculptures will be on view January 22 through February 7 at Cavalier Galleries, 405 Greenwich Avenue, Greenwich, CT. The artists shown exemplify the skills and spirit of Classical Realism but approach their work with a contemporary perspective that allows for a fresh take on a centuries-old style.

Classical training is intensely disciplined and promotes aesthetic refinement and practiced skill. Artists such as Robert Bodem and Daniel E. Greene exemplify the style by showcasing their proficiency in form and technique while offering the viewer a fresh perspective on traditional subjects. Their creativity married with their mastery of form and skill strikes a harmonious balance that has long been absent from Modern art.

Several of the artists in the exhibition are teachers at one of the leading Contemporary Realist schools, the Grand Central Academy’s Water Street Atelier. Founded by Jacob Collins, their work embodies the spirit of the humanist tradition and places them at the heart of the resurgence of realism among young American painters. Edward Minoff, a teacher at the Academy since 2006, creates works of staggering beauty that showcase the discipline taught at the Water Street Atelier. His surf and landscape scenes are painstakingly constructed yet emotionally provocative.

Scott Waddell teaches figure painting at the Water Street Atelier. Waddell expresses his singular voice in dramatically-lit character dramas and spectacular portraits. His darkly narrative works evoke a cinematic feeling and much like the chiaroscuro painters of the past, he relies on light and shadow to create emphasis and drama in his large-scale works as well as his spectacular portrait paintings.

Douglas Flynt, Joshua LaRock and Travis Schlaht are also alumnus and teachers at the Grand Central Academy. Their still lifes put emphasis on each element of their carefully constructed arrangements and bring new life to the subject. Joel Carson Jones is the founder and Head Instructor of Truform Studio in Plymouth, PA. His small scale still life works often use contemporary objects as their focus, such as his Star Sail oil. Joel has also become increasingly popular for his amazing trompe l’oiel paintings.

The exhibition also includes paintings by the acclaimed portrait painter, Daniel E. Greene. A member of the National Academy since 1969, he is a former instructor of painting at the National Academy of Design and the Art Students League of New York. He has won copious awards for his portrait and still life work and has truly taken realism into the 21st century.

Other pioneers in the movement include, Douglas Wiltraut and Michael Aviano. Douglas is one of America's foremost painters in egg tempera and dry brush watercolor. His painting, Cracked Rib, is an extraordinary example of the realism that can be achieved through mastering ones craft. Michael Aviano taught Jacob Collins at the Arts Students League and promoted classical principles and aesthetics during the height of the Abstractionist movement. His still life and portrait work are coveted among collectors and his long teaching career has produced a large following of students and admirers.

Robert Bodem and Bruno Lucchesi are exceptional Realist sculptors. Bodem is classically trained and teaches at the Florence Academy of Art. His figurative works are strikingly posed as to accentuate all parts of the body but his technical prowess in recreating the human form is balanced by a fluidity and beauty rarely seen among sculptors. Bruno Lucchesi also got his start in Florence in 1950, when he was appointed assistant professor of architecture at the Art Academy in Florence. He went on to teach at the New School for Social Research and the National Academy of Design in New York. Lucchesi’s sculptures are often beautifully crafted figures balanced precariously on either a chair leg or stand. His figures are enhanced with a sense of drama by allowing only a small point of contact between the figure and its base.

Devotion to aesthetic refinement was considered unpopular for many years among Modern artists and collectors. The return to classical training is a boon to the ever evolving art world as it allows for artists to create works of exceptional technical merit and creativity. Reviving Realism: Contemporary Masters of the Classical Tradition showcases the works of established artists who fought to keep Realism alive in America as well as the new wave of emerging young artists who are expanding the movement by creating works of staggering beauty and exceptional technical merit.

To see the exhibition online, click HERE

Monday, January 18, 2010

Introducing Cesar Santos

Cavalier Galleries is pleased to announce the addition of Cesar Santos to our roster of exceptional young realists. Born in Cuba in 1982, Santos immigrated to the United States in 1995 where he began to develop his artistic interests. Santos studied at Miami Dade College, followed by the New World School of the Arts where he received his Associates Degree in Fine Arts, and continued in Florence at the Angel Academy of Art under Michael John Angel, student of Pietro Annigoni. Here he was introduced to the techniques and methods of the Renaissance, 18th century, and the French Ateliers of 19th century.

Upon graduation, Santos returned to Miami where he has been building a successful career. He has completed numerous public commissions, including "The Camera," unveiled in January as the poster image for the Miami International Film Festival, "Danza," the poster image for the Miami International Ballet Festival, and most recently a presidential portrait of Dr. Modesto A. Maidique, commissioned by the Frost Art Museum. His work is held in private and public collections in Europe, Latin America and North America.

Santos' works will be featured in our Greenwich gallery as a part of our "Reviving
Realism: Contemporary Masters of the Classical Tradition" Exhibition, running from January 22nd - February 7, 2010.

To learn more, please visit our website at

To discuss the acquisition of one of these pieces or to request future updates on Cesar Santos, please contact us by phone or email.
Phone: 203.869.3664 / 508.325.4405

Saturday, January 16, 2010

Palm Beach Jewelry, Art & Antique Show

Cavalier Galleries is pleased to be participating in the upcoming Palm Beach Art Fair.

February 13 - 16, 2010
Presidents Day Weekend

Booth no. 525

Palm Beach County Convention Center
650 Okeechobee Blvd.
West Palm Beach, FL 33401

VIP Preview
Friday, February 12, 7-10pm

General Admission
Saturday, Feb. 13: 11am-7pm
Sunday, Feb. 14: 11am-7pm
Monday, Feb. 15: 11am-7pm
Tuesday, Feb. 16: 11am-6pm

Please contact us to request your complimentary passes

New Painting By Leonard Everett Fisher

To see all of Leonard's work, please visit his page on our website.