Over a glass of bubbly cider (the beverage of the province) and a vase brimming with luscious roses, you look out across a picturesque port and sigh…. A row of houses with slate-covered facades borders a sparkling harbor. Sailboats effortlessly glide by as the Clocher Sainte-Catherine tolls the hour. It is a perfect day in Honfleur, France…the kind of day you wish to capture in a painting.
The beautiful Honfleur has always struck favor with artists, especially the Impressionists. No less than Monet, Courbet, Cals, Dubourg, Boudin, Bazille, Corot, Sisley and Jongkind have immortalized the subject in their works, providing an array of perspectives and a shared love of aestheticism. French landscape painter, Eugene Boudin described La Ferme Saint Simeon hotel in Honfleur as “the most ravishing spot in the world.” Fortunately, the scene has hardly changed over the years, prompting contemporary artists to seek out Honfleur’s old world beauty.
Born in Moscow, Evgeny and Lydia Baranov met when they were both working as architects with the Institute of Special Projects in Restoration. They married and eventually began painting together—a highly unique method of simultaneous collaboration that provides variability and depth to their works. Most of their paintings are characterized by a realistic and sometimes semi-Impressionist style infused with drama and sensation. It is hard to look at one of their works and not feel moved –“Roses and Cider” being no exception. The couple has been featured in numerous exhibitions nationwide and their works are housed in the collections of the Hearst family, the Clint Eastwood family, the Alaska Court System, the Royal Family of the United Kingdom, and others. They currently reside in Pebble Beach, California.
Notes: Some information on Honfleur gathered from www.dailymail.co.uk. Access article here.