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Romanticism Post


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Romanticism Post

  1. 2. Romanticism <ul><li>Covers literature, painting, music, architecture, criticism, etc. </li></ul><ul><li>Rejection of the precepts of order, calm, harmony, balance, idealization and rationality (Classicism) </li></ul><ul><li>Reaction against the Enlightenment and physical materialism </li></ul>
  2. 3. Romanticism Emphasized <ul><li>the Individual </li></ul><ul><li>the Subjective </li></ul><ul><li>the Irrational </li></ul><ul><li>the Imaginative </li></ul><ul><li>the Personal </li></ul><ul><li>the Emotional </li></ul><ul><li>The Visonary </li></ul><ul><li>The Transcendental </li></ul><ul><li>Deepened appreciation of nature </li></ul><ul><li>Exaltation of emotion over reason </li></ul><ul><li>Senses over intellect </li></ul><ul><li>Examintion of human moods </li></ul><ul><li>Preoccupation with the genius and ther hero </li></ul>
  3. 4. Romanticism <ul><li>Highly Influenced by Rousseau </li></ul><ul><li>Starts in Germany with Goethe </li></ul><ul><li>The Science of Light tells us nothing of the beauty of light </li></ul><ul><li>Work for the sheer intrinsic value of it </li></ul><ul><li>Emmanuel Kant – Science had left a philosphy that ws too mechanical and indifferent to the human condition </li></ul>
  4. 5. Introduction to Romanticism <ul><li>Henry Fuseli, The Nightmare, 1781 </li></ul><ul><li>Girl: virginal white </li></ul><ul><li>Horse: peeks from behind curtain </li></ul><ul><li>Incubus: brown, cannot be seen by the girl even if her eyes were open, sits on her chest </li></ul><ul><li>She feels the suffocation of the incubus </li></ul><ul><li>Sexual overtones </li></ul><ul><li>Curtain: dark and theatrically red </li></ul><ul><li>Nightmare conveys what is felt, not what is seen, by the dreamer </li></ul><ul><li>Mirror reflects nothing </li></ul><ul><li>Mara: in Norse mythology a spirit who comes in the night and suffocates sleepers, stealing their breath away </li></ul><ul><li>Contemporary scene, not mythological: contemporary furnishings </li></ul><ul><li>Germanic violence and Italian Mannerism </li></ul>
  5. 6. Introduction to Romanticism <ul><li>Blake, Ancient of Days, 1794 </li></ul><ul><li>From Europe, A Prophecy </li></ul><ul><li>A sun, or a shield covering a sun, rays from behind </li></ul><ul><li>Strong lateral wind </li></ul><ul><li>Black abyss </li></ul><ul><li>Compass: makes order out of chaos </li></ul><ul><li>Influence of Italian Mannerism </li></ul><ul><li>Figure’s name is Urizen: play on “Your Reason” </li></ul>
  6. 7. <ul><li>Giaovanni Battista Piranesi, Prisons #14, 1746 - 1761 </li></ul><ul><li>Many ambiguities: where do the vaults end? The staircases lead? The balconies go to? </li></ul><ul><li>Who are the wretched who wander up and down the stairs? </li></ul><ul><li>By whose authority are they in prison? For what reason? </li></ul><ul><li>Haunting, frightening, mysterious quality </li></ul><ul><li>Monumental compositions </li></ul><ul><li>Zigzag of contrasting diagonals </li></ul><ul><li>Deeply enclosed structures </li></ul><ul><li>Sketchy and mysterious figures </li></ul><ul><li>Darkly inked engraving </li></ul><ul><li>Spikes emerge ominously from lower left corner </li></ul>
  7. 8. Romanticism in France <ul><li>Jean Gros, Napoleon at the Pesthouse of Jaffa, 1804 </li></ul><ul><li>Event that took place March 11, 1799 </li></ul><ul><li>Violent outbreak of bubonic plague in Napoleon’s army in the Middle East </li></ul><ul><li>Painted to respond to negative publicity Napoleon earned when he ordered the poisoning of prisoners whom he could not afford to house nor feed </li></ul><ul><li>Acting out his legend as a divinity he enters the pesthouse to calm the panic by demonstrating he is not afraid </li></ul><ul><li>Comforting them, touching them, in a reference to the Doubting Thomas of the Bible </li></ul><ul><li>Napoleon as Christ with the miraculous powers to heal </li></ul><ul><li>Sacred tradition of the healing king </li></ul><ul><li>Napoleon’s touching of the sick man was to disprove that the disease was contagious and incurable </li></ul><ul><li>Semi-nudity of figures </li></ul><ul><li>Cf. Oath of the Horatii </li></ul><ul><li>Architectural framework sets the scene </li></ul><ul><li>Gothic arches </li></ul><ul><li>Young doctor, himself stricken with plague, holds the body of a dying man in his lap at lower right </li></ul><ul><li>Napoleon’s trim figure is bordered by the naked flesh of two monumental plague-stricken men </li></ul><ul><li>Napoleon’s men hide their noses from the stink of decaying flesh </li></ul>
  8. 10. Romanticism in France <ul><li>Gericault, The Raft of the Medusa, 1818 </li></ul><ul><li>Government ship bound for Senegal wrecked in 1816 </li></ul><ul><li>Life boats accommodated the wealthy, 149 other passengers were deserted by the captain, placed in a raft 65 by 35 and cut loose in the Atlantic </li></ul><ul><li>Only 15 survived </li></ul><ul><li>Géricault made scale model of raft in his studio, interviewed and painted survivors </li></ul><ul><li>Concentration on moment of rescue </li></ul><ul><li>Use of foreshortening </li></ul><ul><li>Pyramid structure </li></ul><ul><li>Heroic musculature </li></ul><ul><li>Delacroix upside-down in foreground </li></ul><ul><li>Monochromatic </li></ul><ul><li>Concentric zones: outer margin of green water and blue sky frames the brown mass of raft which, in turn, holds the grayish figures </li></ul><ul><li>Appears in twilight, warm diffuse glow of the morning sun </li></ul><ul><li>Foreground: weight of corpses and massive mourners </li></ul><ul><li>Middle ground: figures lifting and holding </li></ul><ul><li>Ascent: climax of the painting at the intersection of the diagonals </li></ul><ul><li>Painting dips down into our own space </li></ul><ul><li>References to Michelangelo </li></ul>
  9. 12. Romanticism in France <ul><li>Gericault, Insane Woman </li></ul><ul><li>Insightful portrait of the insane </li></ul><ul><li>Artist’s own fragile mental health </li></ul><ul><li>History of insanity in his family </li></ul><ul><li>Suffered a mental disorder in October 1819 </li></ul><ul><li>Painted 10 paintings of lunatics, 5 survive </li></ul>
  10. 13. Romanticism in France <ul><li>Eugene Delacroix, Death of Sardanapalus, 1827 </li></ul><ul><li>Inspired by a tragic drama by Byron, published in 1821 </li></ul><ul><li>The satrap, on his bed of state, surrounded by a funeral pyre </li></ul><ul><li>Faced with defeat, he destroys all so that nothing will survive for the victors </li></ul><ul><li>Eunuchs, wives, concubines, pages, dogs, horses killed before his eyes </li></ul><ul><li>Pandemonium of passions </li></ul><ul><li>Whirling mixture of human and animal forms </li></ul><ul><li>King: cf. Etruscan Sarcophagus from Cerveteri </li></ul><ul><li>Vignette: an empty central part of the painting, clear in center and objects scattered toward edges </li></ul><ul><li>Tempestuous, crowded </li></ul><ul><li>Rubenesque women </li></ul><ul><li>Triangular composition </li></ul>
  11. 15. Romanticism in France <ul><li>Delacroix, Liberty Leading the People </li></ul><ul><li>July Revolution of 1830 </li></ul><ul><li>Anecdote that Delacroix had witnessed a young girl who saw the nude corpse of her brother who had been shot by the Swiss Guards; she took up arms and killed nine Royalist troops before she was shot </li></ul><ul><li>Unity of structure </li></ul><ul><li>Dead man seems to have been dead eight days ago, critics said </li></ul><ul><li>Liberty: face similar to an ignudi on the Sistine Ceiling </li></ul><ul><li>Frieze-like arrangement of the background </li></ul><ul><li>Pyramid structure rises up and triangular grouping comes toward us </li></ul><ul><li>French tri-color atop Notre Dame </li></ul><ul><li>Cf. Venus de Milo </li></ul><ul><li>Figure with the cocked hat in the background symbolizes the role of the students from the Ecole Polytechnique for their role in helping the uprising </li></ul><ul><li>Middle class man with rifle and top hat </li></ul><ul><li>Proletariat with saber </li></ul>
  12. 17. Romanticism in France <ul><li>Ingres, The Grand Odalisque </li></ul><ul><li>Criticized as “three too many vertebrae” and “no muscle, no bone, no life” </li></ul><ul><li>Exotic Turkish setting </li></ul><ul><li>Sculpturesque style </li></ul><ul><li>Raphael inspired head </li></ul><ul><li>Cool detachment </li></ul><ul><li>Arms are out of proportion with one another </li></ul><ul><li>Position of legs structurally impossible </li></ul><ul><li>Suppleness of her curves </li></ul><ul><li>Elongation: Italian Mannerism, i.e. Parmigianino, Bronzino </li></ul><ul><li>Flatness of forms </li></ul><ul><li>Cf. Canova, Pauline Borghese as Venus </li></ul><ul><li> </li></ul>
  13. 18. Romanticism in France <ul><li>Ingres, Apotheosis of Homer </li></ul><ul><li>Composition centered around the enthroned Homer, seated in front of an Ionic temple, crowned by Fame </li></ul><ul><li>On either side are personifications of Iliad (left) and Odyssey (right) </li></ul><ul><li>Inspired by The School of Athens </li></ul><ul><li>Symmetrical, balanced, orderly </li></ul><ul><li>Neoclassical style </li></ul><ul><li> </li></ul>
  14. 19. Romanticism in Spain <ul><li>Goya, The Family of Charles IV, 1800 - 1801 </li></ul><ul><li>Goya used a mirror asking the sitters to compare their likeness to the painted likeness </li></ul><ul><li>Goya in shadow of painting, a reference of Velázquez’s Maids of Honor </li></ul><ul><li>Magnificent ceremonial costumes seem overplayed </li></ul><ul><li>Left group dominated by Prince Ferdinand in blue </li></ul><ul><li>Center group dominated by Queen Maria Luisa, who was cruel and ambitious in life, unfaithful to her husband </li></ul><ul><li>Right group dominated by King Carlos IV </li></ul><ul><li>Satire? </li></ul><ul><li>Background painting on left is of Lot and His Daughters: relationship to the main painting? </li></ul>
  15. 20. Family of Charles IV, 1800
  16. 21. Romanticism in Spain <ul><li>Goya, The Third of May 1808 </li></ul><ul><li>Historical background: French army occupies Spain, and seizes King and Queen of Spain. The uprising is caused by the abandonment of the Royal Family, held in prison in France </li></ul><ul><li>Uprising in Madrid brutally crushed by the French </li></ul><ul><li>French round up suspects, killing 40-45 outside the city walls </li></ul><ul><li>Christ-like figure in crucifixion pose with stigmata on hands expresses frustration </li></ul><ul><li>French are faceless with robotic movements </li></ul><ul><li>French fire at extremely close range </li></ul><ul><li>Emphasis on gory details </li></ul><ul><li>Various human emotions displayed </li></ul><ul><li>Dark background surrounds church in distance </li></ul><ul><li>Spanish sacrifice for their country but are unheroic figures </li></ul><ul><li>Goya, Saturn Devouring One of His Children </li></ul><ul><li>Sinister blackness, panic stricken eyes </li></ul><ul><li>Voracious mouth </li></ul><ul><li>Symbol: monstrous self-destruction of humans </li></ul><ul><li>Symbol: time which destroys its creations </li></ul>
  17. 23. <ul><li>Goya, Saturn Devouring One of His Children </li></ul><ul><li>Sinister blackness, panic stricken eyes </li></ul><ul><li>Voracious mouth </li></ul><ul><li>Symbol: monstrous self-destruction of humans </li></ul><ul><li>Symbol: time which destroys its creations </li></ul>
  18. 24. Romantic Landscape <ul><li>Constable, The Hay Wain </li></ul><ul><li>Painter of pastoral English scenery </li></ul><ul><li>Oneness with nature sought by Romantic poets </li></ul><ul><li>Man as a participant in the landscape </li></ul><ul><li>Sense of monumentality, rhythm, color, movement </li></ul><ul><li>Composed as if accidental </li></ul><ul><li>Clouds filled with color and light </li></ul><ul><li>Many colors in one: trees many shades of green, clouds, reflections, etc. </li></ul><ul><li>Cottage camouflaged by trees </li></ul><ul><li>Legend about the occupant of the cottage: he was 80 and spent only four nights of his life elsewhere. He and the cottage are part of the natural landscape </li></ul><ul><li>Colors and light are flecked and vibrant and tend to obscure details </li></ul>
  19. 25. Romantic Landscape <ul><li>Turner, The Slave Ship </li></ul><ul><li>1833: slavery ended in Britain, but guilt of slave trade cannot be erased by an act of Parliament </li></ul><ul><li>Slave traders are the sharks </li></ul><ul><li>In 1783 an epidemic broke out on a ship, The Zong </li></ul><ul><li>Slaves thrown over board so that the owners could collect insurance money. Slaves dying of disease were uninsurable </li></ul><ul><li>Shipwrecks a common theme in English painting, 5000 people a year died at sea </li></ul><ul><li>Color reflective of emotional state </li></ul><ul><li>Horror of man’s inhumanity to man is stressed </li></ul><ul><li>Fast sketchy brushwork </li></ul><ul><li>Blood red sunset acts symbolically </li></ul><ul><li>Blurred forms </li></ul>
  20. 26. Romantic Landscape <ul><li>Caspar David Friedrich, Abbey in the Oak Forest </li></ul><ul><li>Landscapes as temples </li></ul><ul><li>Paintings as altarpieces </li></ul><ul><li>Landscape as a representation of the unrepresentable God </li></ul><ul><li>Gothic cathedral as Christendom, oaks as the pagan past </li></ul><ul><li>Landscape itself elegized as a monument </li></ul><ul><li>Row of monks carrying a coffin </li></ul><ul><li>Immediate foreground, remote background </li></ul><ul><li>Winter: skeletal and chilling </li></ul><ul><li>Irregularity of Gothic ruins in step with the adjacent oak trees </li></ul><ul><li>Feeling of melancholy </li></ul><ul><li>Divinity inherent in nature </li></ul><ul><li>Strong horizontals interrupted by verticals of trees and ruins </li></ul><ul><li>Many symbols of death </li></ul>
  21. 27. Romanticism in America <ul><li>Thomas Cole, The Oxbow, 1836 </li></ul><ul><li>Founder of the Hudson River School of landscape painting </li></ul><ul><li>Painted as reply to Captain Basil Hall’s book Travels in North America , 1829, in which he alleged that America was indifferent to its natural blessings </li></ul><ul><li>Also alleged that American painters were incompetent and could not capture American scenery </li></ul><ul><li>To Cole, America possesses the sublime and the beautiful in its landscape </li></ul><ul><li>Wildness of landscape on left compared to the domesticated landscape on right </li></ul><ul><li>Cole is seated with an easel between both landscapes, looking at us </li></ul><ul><li>Left: contorted trunk, receding storm, wild mountains, impenetrable forest </li></ul><ul><li>Right: cultivated, orderly, man taming nature, but remaining in harmony with her </li></ul><ul><li>Oxbow as a counterstatement to Hall’s book </li></ul>
  22. 28. Cole, The Oxbow , 1836
  23. 29. Romanticism in America <ul><li>Frederick Church, Twilight in the Wilderness </li></ul><ul><li>Cole’s only pupil and his successor </li></ul><ul><li>Awe-inspiring view of the sun setting over a majestic landscape </li></ul><ul><li>No trace of humanity </li></ul><ul><li>Idealistic and comforting view </li></ul><ul><li>Affirmation of the divine in nature </li></ul><ul><li>Strong horizontals interrupted by verticals and diagonals </li></ul><ul><li>Color used as spectacle </li></ul><ul><li>Great detail in leaves of trees and feathery clouds </li></ul><ul><li>Is it a symbol of the oncoming Civil War? </li></ul>