Our art – their world


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  • Classical Antiquity The remains of Greco-Roman antiquity—coins, gems, sculpture, buildings, and the classics of Greek and Latin literature—fascinated the thinking men and women of the Italian Renaissance. The arts and the humanities, they reasoned, had declined during the "middle ages" that stretched between the end of antiquity and their own time, but by emulating the exemplary works of the ancients, even striving to surpass them, contemporary artists and writers might restore the arts and letters to their former grandeur. In Renaissance Italy, the desire to know and to match the excellence of the ancients often engendered passionate endeavor. The Florentine author Niccolò Machiavelli, for example, described his nightly retreats into his library in these memorable words: "At the door I take off my muddy everyday clothes. I dress myself as though I were about to appear before a royal court as a Florentine envoy. Then decently attired I enter the antique courts of the great men of antiquity. They receive me with friendship; from them I derive the nourishment which alone is mine and for which I was born. Without false shame I talk with them and ask them the causes of the actions; and their humanity is so great they answer me. For four long and happy hours I lose myself in them. I forget all my troubles; I am not afraid of poverty or death. I transform myself entirely in their likeness." Artists likewise worked to transform their art by studying, measuring, drawing , and imitating admired examples of classical sculpture and architecture, and this is reflected in many of the greatest works in The Metropolitan Museum of Art.
  • While Ingres' work seemingly embodied the ordered classicism of the David in contrast to the disorder and tumult of the Delacroix, in fact both works draw from the Davidian tradition but each ultimately subverts that model, asserting the originality of the artist—a central notion of Romanticism.
  • Ingres developed a meticulous neoclassical style Notable for impeccable draughtsmanship and smooth enamel-like finish Although style was the model of classical correctness his subject matter was often distinctly Romantic
  • Dramatic landscapes expressed mood, emotions and atmosphere Ranks high among the formative figures of Romanticism
  • Constable and Turner raised the status of landscape painting in England Landscape painting was poorly paid He refused to paint Romantic ideal scenes and wanted to paint his local town Struggled for success for years and was obliged to paint portraits for his profession Unprecedented attention to atmospheric conditions – copious studies of clouds So realistic that one critic joked that Constable’s paintings always made him want to reach for his umbrella Finally found success with hi s 6 footers gaining membership to the RA and winning gold at the Salon
  • Travelled all round England making sketches to later use in oils His paintings marked a classical influence 1844 ‘Rain and Steam and Speed’ marked a next phase as a precursor to impressionism
  • Our art – their world

    1. 1. 1600- 1800 Overview• France emerges during this period as a major world power and a cultural center to rival Rome, fountain head of the Baroque style.• This is largely due to the absolutist aims of the French monarchs, particularly Louis XIV, who, with a retinue of architects, painters, and sculptors, fashions a court of peerless splendour.• The high Baroque style from Rome is slower to arrive in France than elsewhere in Europe, as a strict classicism prevails for much of the seventeenth century.• In the latter half of the period, France is the seat of the Enlightenment, a major intellectual movement that asserts the power of reason and mobilizes a widespread dissatisfaction with contemporary social and political ills that results, later in the century, in revolution.• rococo• With the Enlightenment comes a renewed veneration of antiquity and a Neoclassical movement in the arts; this gives way, at the end of the period, to Romanticism.
    2. 2. 17 Century ththe Age of Baroque
    3. 3. Chronology• 1615 Cervantes begins Don Quixote• 1618 The beginning of the 30 Year War• 1619 Harvey’s discovered the circulation of the blood• 1630 the building of the Taj Mahal begins• 1635 Foundation of the Academie Francaise• 1642 Rembrandt paints The Night Watch• 1661 Versailles palace begins construction• 1666 Stradivarius makes his first violin• 1675 The Greenwich Observatory is built• 1682 the Accession of Peter the Great of Russia• 1683 Newton expounds his theory of gravity• 1714 Fahrenheit invents the mercury thermometer
    4. 4. 17th Century 1600 -1700• The reformation had been succeeded by the Counter-Reformation• Artists and architects benefited from the renewed strength of the Catholic Church• Pope Sixtus V replanned Rome in magnificent style with churches, fountains and palaces at focal points in the city.• Noble families rivalled each other as patrons• Rome became the Artistic capital or the world
    5. 5. Artists came from Spain, France, England and Flounders for commissionsPainters embraced the challenge to create integrated environments (un bel composto) meant to heighten religious experienceA bohemian artists’ colony which still survives grew up around the Spanish StepsMembers of this colony led the way in creating new art styles and ideas which spread through out Europe
    6. 6. Early Baroque• Reaction against the artificiality of the 16th Century Mannerism• Realism was again in fashion, although interpreted in different ways• Two most important groups of Early Baroque were the Naturalists and Classicists
    7. 7. Naturalism• Based on extreme realism• Details are naturalistic and painted in bright clear colours.• As a rule painted directly on the canvas
    8. 8. Jan van GoyenRiver Landscape with Lime Kilns 1640’s
    9. 9. Salomon van Ruysdael A WoodedLandscapes withCattle and Droves on a Ferry 1663
    10. 10. Carthage Dido, 1813
    11. 11. Carthage by Turner
    12. 12. • Religious stories told in contemporary idiom – ie: the apostles no longer heroes but rough- looking fishermen• Extreme foreshortening
    13. 13. Peter Paul Rubens Two Saints
    14. 14. Carravagio, Table at Eramuas
    15. 15. Nicolas PoussinThe Triumph of David c.1631-3
    16. 16. Harmensz van RijnRembrandt Self Portrait 1658
    17. 17. Jan VermeerGirl with the PearlEar ring c.1665-6
    18. 18. Georges de la TourThe Newborn Child late 1640’s
    19. 19. Classicism• Looked to realism of High Renaissance painting and classical sculpture for inspiration• Worked from preliminary drawings• Monumental figures• Glowing sensuous colours
    20. 20. Francois BoucherLa Cible d’Amour ( The Target of Love) 1758
    21. 21. Emphasis on clarity of expression and gestureEctasy of Mother Theresa by Bellini
    22. 22. • Thomas Wentworth• Van Dyck
    23. 23. ThomasGainsboroughPortrait of David Garrick c1770
    24. 24. • Introduction of a new form of painting (realism) began to paint scenes from everyday life - Millet
    25. 25. Jean- HonoreFragonard Les Hazards heureux del’escarpolette(‘The Swing’) 1767
    26. 26. 18 Century th 1700 - 1800The Rococo, Neoclassical and Romantic Era
    27. 27. Chronology• 1717 The first inoculation against smallpox• 1720 Johann Sebastian Bach completes his first Brandenburg concerto• 1735 Linnaeus completes a new system for the classification of plants• 1745 The building of Sans Souci palace in Berlin begins• 1752 Benjamin Franklin invents the lightning conductor• 1755 A great earthquake in Lisbon• 1756 The beginning of the Seven Years’ War• 1765 James Watt invents the steam engine• 1770 Goethe starts work on Faust• 1776 The American Declaration of Independence• 1781 Kant publishes Critique of Pure Reason• 1787 Mozart appointed Chamber Musician to Emperor Joseph II• 1789 The storming of the Bastille leads to the outbreak of revolution in France• 1804 Napoleon Bonaparte becomes French Emperor
    28. 28. The Coronation of Napoleon,1804 David
    29. 29. Rococo• The Rococo style was fashionable in the early 18th century and was succeeded by Neoclassical which was then succeeded by the Romantic style• Reaction against pomp and grandeur of the court of Louis XIV
    30. 30. Louis XIVRigeud1781
    31. 31. • Rococo was associated with his successor Louis XV• Colours are light with a lot of white and silver.• others colours favoured were: dusty rose, pale lemon, misty blue, and turquoise• not much gold as it was too heavy• S- curves and C- curves frequently appear in composition
    32. 32. Suzanna and the Elders, VEN
    33. 33. • Favourite subject stories from the Old Testament or ancient history but with a much more light-hearted approach• Rococo was regarded as the last phase of Baroque due to similarities such as illusionist ceiling paintings of fabulous fantasy worlds
    34. 34. Rococo Ceiling
    35. 35. Neoclassicism & Romanticism 1750’s• In total contrast to the Rococo• Demand for “heroism and civic virtues’ (Goethe)• The Paris Salon – art should be governed by rational rules and not uncontrolled feelings• Rococo was seen and hedonistic and self- indulgent• Neoclassical art used spare but precise outline preliminary drawings• Figures are posed parallel instead of diagonal to the picture plane
    36. 36. The Classical Ideal• The second half of the eighteenth century in Europe saw the increasing influence of classical antiquity on artistic style and the development of taste. The achievements of the Renaissance from the period of Raphael (1483– 1520) to that of Nicolas Poussin (1594–1665) and Claude Lorrain (1604/5?– 1682) served as a conduit for a renewed interest in harmony, simplicity, and proportion, an interest that gained momentum as the new science of archaeology brought forth spectacular remnants of a buried world of great beauty. Giovanni Paolo Paninis Ancient Rome (1757 ) is representative of the movement, a tour-de-force painting encompassing many of the monuments in and around Rome, including the Pantheon, the Colosseum, Trajans Column, the Medici Vase, the Farnese Hercules,and the Laocoön. In the midst of a grand gallery, students copy the great works of antiquity. The Neoclassical style arose from such first-hand observation and reproduction of antique works and came to dominate European architecture, painting, sculpture, and decorative arts.
    37. 37. Romanticism 1800- 1850’s• Romanticism, gained momentum as an artistic movement in France and Britain in the early decades of the nineteenth century and flourished until mid-century.• With its emphasis on the imagination and emotion, Romanticism emerged as a response to the disillusionment with the Enlightenment values of reason and order in the aftermath of the French Revolution of 1789.• Though often positioned in opposition to Neoclassicism, early Romanticism was shaped largely by artists trained in David’s studio, including Ingres• This blurring of stylistic boundaries is best expressed in Ingres Apotheosis of Homer and Eugène Delacroixs Death of Sardanapalus which polarized the public at the Salon of 1827 in Paris.
    38. 38. Jean- Auguste- Dominique IngresJupiter and Thetis 1811
    39. 39. • In Baroque and Rococo contours are formed by shading, in Neoclassical they are formed by unbroken lines, not interrupted by light or shadow or even light• A sense of order prevails everywhere.• Portraits are half or full length
    40. 40. Francisco GoyaThe Clothed Maja c. 1800-05
    41. 41. • Landscapes had traditionally been used to fill in the background of a painting• As techniques improved they became more important to artists• The public still wanted a ‘subject’ and artists had to comply
    42. 42. • In Romantic art, nature—with its uncontrollable power, unpredictability, and potential for cataclysmic extremes—offered an alternative to the ordered world of Enlightenment thought. The violent and terrifying images of nature conjured by Romantic artists recall the eighteenth-century aesthetic of the Sublime. As articulated by the British statesman Edmund Burke in a 1757 treatise and echoed by the French philosopher Denis Diderot a decade later, "all that stuns the soul, all that imprints a feeling of terror, leads to the sublime." In French and British painting of the late eighteenth and early nineteenth centuries, the recurrence of images of shipwrecks ( 2003.42.56) and other representations of mans struggle against the awesome power of nature manifest this sensibility. Scenes of shipwrecks culminated in 1819 with Théodore Gericaults strikingly original Raft of the Medusa (Louvre), based on a contemporary event. In its horrifying explicitness, emotional intensity, and conspicuous lack of a hero, The Raft of the Medusa became an icon of the emerging Romantic style. Similarly, J. M. W. Turners 1812 depiction of Hannibal and his army crossing the Alps (Tate Britain, London), in which the general and his troops are dwarfed by the overwhelming scale of the landscape and engulfed in the swirling vortex of snow, embodies the Romantic sensibility in landscape painting. Gericault also explored the Romantic landscape in a series of views representing different times of day; in Evening: Landscape with an Aqueduct (1989.183), the dramatic sky, blasted tree, and classical ruins evoke a sense of melancholic reverie.
    43. 43. Casper DavidFriedrich The Wanderer Above theSea of Clouds 1818
    44. 44. • If artists did paint landscapes it was for their own pleasure and often in Italianate style• Another facet of the Romantic attitude toward nature emerges in the landscapes of John Constable, whose art expresses his response to his native English countryside. For his major paintings, Constable executed full-scale sketches, as in a view of Salisbury Cathedral ( 50.145.8); he wrote that a sketch represents "nothing but one state of mind—that which you were in at the time." When his landscapes were exhibited in Paris at the Salon of 1824, critics and artists embraced his art as "nature itself." Constables subjective, highly personal view of nature accords with the individuality that is a central tenet of Romanticism.
    45. 45. John ConstableLock on the Stour
    46. 46. J.M.W. TurnerFarnley Hall from above Otley
    47. 47. • This interest in the individual and subjective—at odds with eighteenth-century rationalism—is mirrored in the Romantic approach to portraiture. Traditionally, records of individual likeness, portraits became vehicles for expressing a range of psychological and emotional states in the hands of Romantic painters. Gericault probed the extremes of mental illness in his portraits of psychiatric patients, as well as the darker side of childhood in his unconventional portrayals of children. In his portrait of Alfred Dedreux (41.17), a young boy of about five or six, the child appears intensely serious, more adult than childlike, while the dark clouds in the background convey an unsettling, ominous quality.
    48. 48. Eugene DelacroixLe Puits de la Casbah Tanger
    49. 49. • Such explorations of emotional states extended into the animal kingdom, marking the Romantic fascination with animals as both forces of nature and metaphors for human behavior. This curiosity is manifest in the sketches of wild animals done in the menageries of Paris and London in the 1820s by artists such as Delacroix, Antoine-Louis Barye, and Edwin Landseer. Gericault depicted horses of all breeds—from workhorses to racehorses—in his work. Lord Byrons 1819 tale of Mazeppa tied to a wild horse captivated Romantic artists from Delacroix to Théodore Chassériau, who exploited the violence and passion inherent in the story. Similarly, Horace Vernet, who exhibited two scenes from Mazeppa in the Salon of 1827 (both Musée Calvet, Avignon), also painted the riderless horse race that marked the end of the Roman Carnival, which he witnessed during his 1820 visit to Rome. His oil sketch (87.15.47) captures the frenetic energy of the spectacle, just before the start of the race. Images of wild, unbridled animals evoked primal states that stirred the Romantic imagination.
    50. 50. • In its stylistic diversity and range of subjects, Romanticism defies simple categorization. As the poet and critic Charles Baudelaire wrote in 1846, "Romanticism is precisely situated neither in choice of subject nor in exact truth, but in a way of feeling."