A CREATIVE FAMILY

One of the most moving aspects of the family’s creativity would be their frequent visits to libraries, and antiquities music shops all over the world in the search for unknown scores of forgotten composers, in which my mother excelled.

In addition, my mother would even learn how to play a new instrument just for the sake of playing a composition written for her, for that instrument.

Painters on their pursuit for artistic direction frequently consulted my father, on his turn.

As for myself, I would be a dedicated observer of all the beauty that was around me, starting with the abundant nature of Brazil of my childhood, its trees, birds, rivers, etc… that give me inspiration until this very day. In addition, I would have ideas, creating original artwork, like for instance, my collages.

Annette Celine, September 2015

FELICJA BLUMENTAL

Felicja Blumental was born in Warsaw, Poland on 28th December 1908, where she studied at the National Conservatory, reading composition with Karol Szymanowski and piano with Zbigniew Drzewiecki, Joseph Goldberg, Stephan Askenase and Jósef Turczynski.

She appeared with orchestras throughout Europe (the Philharmonia, the RPO, the LPO, LSO and Scottish National Orchestra) and her appearances in South and North America brought her further acclaim.

While she was greatly admired for her interpretations of Chopin and Mozart, Felicja Blumental made a specialty of music outside the regular repertory, particularly from the late 18th and early 19th centuries. She recorded works for piano and orchestra by Clementi, Field, Kozeluch, Czerny, Hummel, Ries and Paderewski, among others, as well as the piano version of Beethoven’s Violin Concerto.

In addition to recording popular piano concertos, Ms. Blumental’s repertoire also includes solo piano music by Spanish and Portuguese Baroque composers.

She was greatly admired by notable 20th century composers who wrote pieces especially for her. Brazil’s leading composer, Heitor Villa-Lobos, dedicated his Fifth Piano Concerto to Ms. Blumental, which she performed under the composer’s baton with the leading orchestras of Europe and recorded for EMI in Paris with the Orchestre National.

When Krzysztof Penderecki was commissioned to create a new work to mark the 25th anniversary of the Eastman School of Music, he wrote the Partita for Harpsichord and Orchestra, which he dedicated to Ms. Blumental. Ms. Blumental played the work worldwide some 50 times with the composer conducting.

In 1978, Witold Lutoslawski orchestrated his Variations on a Theme of Paganini for Felicja Blumental, which she premiered with the Florida Philharmonic Orchestra conducted by Brian Priestmann.

Many of these recordings are now restored on Brana Records and all CD covers feature the fine art prints of her husband, Markus Mizne.

In 1999, the Tel Aviv Museum of Art, Israel’s most dynamic cultural centre, named its prestigious International Music Festival after her.

FELICJA BLUMENTAL & LONDON SYMPHONY ORCHESTRA PLAYS TAVARES

Concerto In Brazilian Forms No.2 For Piano & Orchestra, Op. 105 – i. Modinha: Tempo Di Batuque (Lento Con Simplicita) by Hekel Tavares.

Performed by Felicja Blumental (piano) and the London Symphony Orchestra with Anatole Fistoulari (conductor).

Artwork by Annette Celine.

FELICJA BLUMENTAL PLAYS SPANISH AND PORTUGUESE KEYBOARD MUSIC

Recorded 1954. Pieces include – Rafael Angles: Adagietto, Fugato in B-flat major. Antonio Soler, Keyboard: Sonata in G minor. Mateo Ferrer, Piano: Sonata in D major. Joseph Freixanet, Piano: Sonata in A major. Anonymous: Toccata in C major. Carlos de Seixas: Fuga in A minor, Keyboard Sonata in C major, Minuet in A minor, Toccata in D minor, Minuet in F minor, Keyboard Sonata in C minor, Toccata in G minor.

Annette Celine

Annette Celine was born in Luxembourg and grew up in Rio de Janeiro.

She studied at the Academie de la Grande Chaumiere Paris, Ecole des Arts Decoratifs Geneva, Graphic Design, Parsons School of Design New York, Arts Student League New York. She also studied life drawing with spanish painter Juan Pons.

She has exibited in Sao Paulo Brazil, at the Ambiente Gallery, Iris Clert in Paris, the Drian Gallery in London, Parma Gallery New York, Felicja Blumental Music Center Tel Aviv, Raanana Library Israel.

A poet, singer and artist

I met Annette in the early 60s. I then had an art gallery in Milan and her parents frequently appeared at my openings with her.

At the age of seven she started studying music and soon was appreciated as an enfant prodige. A born polyglot, gifted with a high and melodious voice, Annette sings fluently in eight languages and has performed in many international music festivals. She has thus appeared – amongst other equally important venues – at the London Wigmore Hall; in Paris at the Salle Gaveau; and at the Carnegie Recital Hall in New York.

Her artistic education was no less thorough. She started studying graphic design in l’École des Arts Décoratifs in Geneva and in 1957, in New York, she perfected her practice at the Parsons School of Design. Here she had a Bauhaus training in art history, life drawing, painting, photography and sculpture. She then joined the Art Students League in New York. Upon her return to her native Brazil she took private lessons in painting with Juan Pons – the famous Spanish painter. Annette has exhibited in various solo and group shows in Paris, London, New York, Sao Paulo and Tel Aviv.

Notwithstanding her having been trained as a painter, her first art works were collages. Here she evidences her own distinctively personal approach and is as far from Schwitters and the Dadaist works as from the current contemporary collages. Annette blends harmoniously different figurative elements to reveal a poetic and visionary world that leaves to the onlooker the flavour of a renewed discovery.

Her painting is no less innovative and striking. In a false naïve introspective stile she perfectly well describes the psychological traits of her personages. For instance in one of her black felt pen and collage of 2013, Lady in a Blue Hat, a dandy is seen wearing on his jacket a shy naked woman; in another, Sunday Afternoon – that may be an imaginary self-portrait – the young girl, with a veil-like-shaped huge hat (an invitation to an unending voyage) is wearing a flowery blouse and pants. In still another, Pre Raphaelite Souvenir, the personage – the shy young woman is wearing again a flowery dress and appears next to two, more mature and thoughtful equally idealized personages, that may stand for her own father and mother.

Arturo Schwarz
Milan, December 2013  

Arturo Schwartz carried on a long-time friendship and correspondence with pioneering Surrealist artist Marcel Duchamp. Schwartz is known as an art historian, lecturer, art consultant and curator of international art exhibitions. His art collection includes more than 700 works by such Surrealist artists as Andre Breton, Marcel Duchamp, Man Ray and Jean Arp. The works include paintings, sculptures, objects, drawings, prints, collages and photographs by more than 200 artists.

Born in Alexandria, he moved to Milan in 1949, where he established a bookstore and later an art gallery, known as the Galleria Schwartz.

Annette's latest collages