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18th Century Art in Europe and the Americas


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18th Century Art in Europe and the Americas

  1. 1. 18th Century Art in Europe and the Americas (1700’s) • Rococo • Neoclassicism • A little Romanticism
  2. 2. A little WESTERN history • Early 1700’s – weath and power are super concentrated to the elite (owned and controlled everything) • Europe conquers the rest of the world basically – struggles as colonies develop, establish trading stations, new settlers, new languages, new government, new religions (move over, indigenous people!) • Tried to make the “new world” as much like the “old world” as they could • Late 170o’s- Industrial revolution (includes manufacturing, politics, etc.) – ALL white men deserve equal rights an opportunities! • THE ENLIGHTENMENT = optimistic view that humanity and its institutions can be reformed, even perfected! - new ideas about humanity, reason, nature, and God • “Philosophes” – rejected the idea that humans are here to serve God or the ruling class- We are born to serve ourselves, darn it! • Free yourself from political and religious shackles! If you pursue your own happiness, you will encourage the happiness of others! RATIONAL thoughts.
  3. 3. • Enlightenment thinkers said nature is rational and good! • We can harness nature and use it for our benefit (industry!) BEFORE the Enlightenment, Europe went through a post-Baroque phase called……
  4. 4. ROCOCO! • Rococo = French word“rocaille” (pebble/shell) and Italian word “barocco” (baroque) • Rococo art looks like ornate shells/pebbles (and “fried spinach” as my professor used to say) • Heavy interest in aristocratic “taste” in art – French Royal Academy dictates what good artistic taste is in Paris • Less interest in royalty than Baroque, more interest in aristocratic society = lavish townhouses for upper class • Rococo architecture attempts to unite many styles • “fete galante” – term for typical Rococo painting in which we see aristocracy in leisurely activities • We see some satirical painting
  5. 5. ROCOCO Architecture: • No straight lines! • Sophisticated, stylish, elegant, graceful, refined • Undulations, curves, dynamic movement • Marriage of painting, architecture, and sculpture – all blended together and unified • No stained glass (prefer clear white light to illuminate all their fancy details) • Sculptures everywhere! No empty spaces! MORE IS MORE!
  6. 6. Kaisersaal (Imperial Hall), Residenz, Wurzburg, Germany by: Johann Balthasar Neumann, 1719-44
  7. 7. • Designed for prince-bishop of Wurzburg • Oval room • White and gold color scheme, delicate curved forms – Rococo to the max! Painting in next slide
  8. 8. The Marriage of the Emperor Frederick and Beatrice of Burgundy, By: Giovanni Battista Tiepolo, fresco, 1751-52
  9. 9. • Looks like a play on a theater stage • Painted stucco curtains reveal fancy costumes and gorgeous setting of this imperial wedding • Heroic figures, behaving like true royals • Pale colors, cascading drapery = Rococo!
  10. 10. Church of the Viernehnheiligen By: Johann Balthasar Neumann (same architect - imperial hall) Germany, 1743-72 •Undulating forms, complex arrangement of curved shapes •Towers have complicated curved designs •Delicate arched windows
  11. 11. Interior • No straight lines! Mix of curves and ovals interlocking • Light pastel colors • Painting, sculpture, and architecture blended into a frothy spectacle
  12. 12. Altar is in the center
  13. 13. ROCOCO Painting…. • Again, no straight lines (even curved frames!) • Figures “spill” out of frames • Erotic, sensual, appealing (curves!) • Playful scenes of love, romance, and sexual themes • Figures are often slender, clothed in shimmering fabric • Outdoor scenes are rich with plant life, Arcadian • Pastel colors • More paintings for private display (not as much public display as Baroque • “Fete galante” – term for aristocracy chilling out in garden settings (we’ll see a lot of these)
  14. 14. The Return from Cythera by: Jean-Antoine Watteau 1717-1719, oil on canvas
  15. 15. •Right: woman listens to a proposition by a pilgrim carrying a handbook on love, a stick, and a flask •Venus overlooks scene with flowers •Dreamy boat with flying cupids •Asymmetrical composition, light and dreamy atmospheric perspective
  16. 16. • Iridescent colors, shimmering fabrics • Slender, delicate figures • Arcadian landscape • Fete galante (remember what that means?) • Inspired by a play AND by the “Mona Lisa”
  17. 17. Similar backgrounds
  18. 18. The Meeting Jean-Honore Fragonard 1771-1773 Oil on canvas • Commissioned by Louis XV’s mistress, Madame du Barry, to decorate her chateau • Secret meeting between a young couple • She looks over her shoulder to make sure they’re not being watched, clutches the letter he sent her to arrange the meeting (how scandalous!)
  19. 19. • Free and lavish brushwork • Bright colors • Lush landscape • Elaborate costumes • Painting has sculpture and architecture elements in it (marriage of all three!)
  20. 20. The Swing Jean-Honore Fragonard 1766, oil on canvas • Woman on swing with patron in lower left with a perfect view up her skirt • Swinging flirtatiously, kicks off her shoe at statue of Cupid (what a tease!) • Cupid is making the “shhhh” gesture (either telling the woman to stop being so bold, or acting as a symbol of their secret love) • Unsuspecting man (bishop?) swings her from behind (bet you didn’t see him at first!)
  21. 21. • Small figures in lush garden setting • Atmospheric perspective • Puffy clouds, plentiful flowers, curves everywhere!
  22. 22. Don’t use this comparison on the exam
  23. 23. Self-Portrait Marie-Louise-Elisabeth Vigee-Lebrun 1790 Oil on canvas • She did many self- portraits (40, all idealized) • Painting a portrait of Marie Antoinette – paints her from memory like a boss (M.A. was killed during French Revolution) – M.A. looks at the artist with admiration and kindness • Lush fabrics • Inspired by Rubens’s portraits
  24. 24. Marie Antoinette and Her Children Marie-Louise-Elisabeth Vigee-Lebrun 1787, oil on canvas • Marie Antoinette had a bad reputation (immoral, irrational, frivolous, etc.) – This painting was done to counteract that image • Represented as the “mother of France” (empty cradle represents her recently deceased child) • Future king of France on right (stands apart, independently – strength even at an early age)
  25. 25. • Scene is in Versailles (see the Hall of Mirrors behind her on the left?) • Throwback to High Renaissance triangular composition, like works by Raphael (Holy Family below)
  26. 26. Apotheosis of the Pisani Family Giambattista Tiepolo 1761-1762 Fresco in the Villa Pisani, Italy •Members of Pisani family float to heaven with heavenly beings •Real people combined with allegories and personifications •Painted and sculpted figures mixed •Curved, elaborate frame (figures spill over frame)
  27. 27. •Limitless space- heaven just keeps going and going •Forms spiraling upwards •Beautiful light, pastel colors •Di sotto in su (“seen from below”)
  28. 28. A word about the British… •Early 1700’s, freedom of expression in literature and the arts (ie: “Gulliver’s Travels”) •Incorporated satire into paintings – usually a series of paintings to tell a story •Paintings often transferred to prints for mass distribution •Themes: exposing political corruption, spoofs on modern life •The grandfather of political cartoons •William Hogarth, what a jokester
  29. 29. The Breakfast Scene from Marriage a la Mode William Hogarth 1745, oil on canvas
  30. 30. •One in a series of six •Turned into prints later •Satire: aristocratic English society, people try to buy their way into it
  31. 31. •Just got married, already fooling around with others •Husband has been out all night (the dog sniffs out the other woman) •Broken sword on floor (maybe lost a fight, symbol of sexual inadequacy)
  32. 32. •Wife has been playing cards all night, lost a fortune in the blink of an eye. The steward’s expression shows he’s fed up with her! – holds unpaid bills •Chair on floor – violin player made a quick exit when husband got home! Oooo, scandal!
  33. 33. Blue Boy Thomas Gainsborough 1770, oil on canvas •Painted over 700 portraits •Influences: Watteau and van Dyke •Similar to van Dyke in coloring and pose •Solidly modeled figure •Aristocratic, elegant, tasteful •Color-coordinated •The son of Gainsborough’s friend (who was not an aristocrat, but an ironworker)
  34. 34. Charles I and Charles II by Anthony Van Dyck
  35. 35. •Cool blues contrast against storm sky •Some say Gainsborough set out to prove that blue could be the central color in a portrait •Sold as prints, very popular •UK sold it to USA in 1920’s for 640K (that’s about 8.5 million today)
  36. 36. Sarah Siddons Thomas Gainsborough 1785, oil on canvas •An actress •Aristocratic appearance, fashionable clothing •Straightforward – no hidden meaning/symbols •Bold profile •Seated in a modern chair, not a throne •Curtain is theater-like (she’s an actress!) •Fabrics of various textures
  37. 37. Sarah Siddons as a Tragic Muse By Joshua Reynolds 1783-1784 Oil on canvas •Sits between personifications of pity and terror w/ melancholy look on her face •Darks/lights (chiaroscuro) and colors reminiscent of Rembrandt
  38. 38. Michelangelo’s Isaiah on the Sistine Chapel ceiling
  39. 39. •Flattering portrait, individual flaws are reduced (typical in female portraits at this time) •Portraits of women often have allegories or mythological features •Women are unaffected by relationships, obligations, and domestic responsibilities. Freedom! •Gestures in the hands
  40. 40. Lord Heathfield Governor of Gibraltar during the Siege of 1779-83 By: Joshua Reynolds 1787, Oil on canvas •An English officer •Holds keys to the fortress of Gibraltar •Heroic portrait •battle in background •Stares off as he thinks about the cost of victory
  41. 41. •High ranking, but not trying to show off – discrete reference to rank •Check him out in the National Gallery in D.C.
  42. 42. Then NEOCLASSICISM comes around… (1750-1815) •Replaces ROCOCO style •The Enlightenment makes people reject royals and aristocrats…. Democracy is the way to go! •Neoclassicism is a more “democratic” style •We’ll see modern subject matter with some classical elements •Inspired by the discovery of the ruins at Pompeii and the books of art theorist Johann Winkelmann •Industrial Revolution! New technology, cast iron construction, cheaper to sculpt with bronze than marble
  43. 43. What’s happening? • Industrial revolution (mass-production, technology, medical and scientific advancements) • Population explosion, improvements to quality of life, but people become slaves to machinery and work in inhumane conditions • THE ENLIGHTENMENT in Europe – intellectual transformation – philosophers and scientists form ideas from logic and observation, not folk wisdom and religion (1st encyclopedia, 1st English dictionary) • Major changes in European politics
  44. 44. Patrons/artists • Art is all over Europe • Rome is an antique – looked at for inspiration and tradition, but no longer a place of progress • Discovery of Pompeii (1748) – the world gets to see Roman works in good condition – admires them • Johann Winckelmann writes first art history book “The History of Ancient Art” (1764) – described the Rococo style as decadent, praised the ancients for their purity of form and perfection • Art academies open up everywhere – artists study art in the “classical tradition” (the proper way) • Artist’s education includes a “Grand Tour” of Italy to see all the cool ancient stuff and get inspired
  45. 45. NEOCLASSICAL Architecture time! • Cast iron introduced (Classicists are appalled! – big stones are the best way, they say) • Gradually people realize the benefits of cast iron (strength, economical, fast) – use it as a base structure and behind walls made of stone or wood (sort of like how the Romans used concrete – they know it’s awesome, but they cover it with something prettier) • Iron used in a bridge! – out in the open! – can be used for structure AND beauty
  46. 46. • Architecture is a re-working of classical principles into a modern vision • Tailored to modern living in the 18th century • Symmetry, balance, order, composition, column orders, pediments, domes • Symmetrical interiors, rooms mirror each other across the hall • Rooms decorated with different themes, wallpaper, paint (ie: green room, red room, Etruscan room, etc.)
  47. 47. Chiswick House 1725, London, England Richard Boyle (architect) and William Kent (interior/garden designer)
  48. 48. •Inspired by Palladio’s Villa Rotunda (Palladio statue on left) •Palladian low dome, decorated balustrade on main floor •Main floor raised over basement level •Pediments over windows and doors
  49. 49. Palladio’s Villa Rotunda (16th Century Italy) Twinsies!
  50. 50. •Symmetrical façade (even the chimneys!) •Semicircular dome windows and obelisk-like chimneys (not Italian-inspired elements) •Rusticated stones on bottom level (Italian Renaissance buildings!)
  51. 51. •White stone surface, uninterrupted by ornamentations (can you believe this came after Rococo?!) •Double staircase, zigzag direction •Dome is over a central art gallery room with paintings and busts
  52. 52. Richly decorated rooms with brilliant colors Ceiling in the “blue velvet room”, and the “red velvet room” (themes!)
  53. 53. •Despite the name, it’s not really a “house” •It’s a pavilion where Richard Boyle, the architect, would entertain guests and show off his art collection
  54. 54. OMG sound the trumpets! WE HAVE LANDED ON U.S. SOIL IN APAH!!! Monticello (“little mountain” in Italian) Thomas Jefferson 1770-1806 Charlottesville, Virginia
  55. 55. Octagonal dome •Main building on Thomas Jefferson’s plantation •Brick building with stucco trim (faux marble) •Tall doors and windows – good for airflow in hot Virginia summer
  56. 56. Looks like it’s one story, but the balustrade hides second floor •Inspired by Palladian villas in Italy and Roman ruins in France •Jefferson liked to save space- narrow spiral staircases, beds in alcoves or in walls between rooms (clever!)
  57. 57. Symmetrical interior
  58. 58. Bed alcove Dome Room Monticello interiors
  59. 59. •Jefferson though America should free itself from influence of British architecture, and turn to Rome for inspiration instead -Roman temple style symbolizes values of American democracy, republicanism, and humanism -Neoclassicism adopted as official style of government architecture in the U.S.
  60. 60. Pantheon Chiswick House Villa RotundaMonticello Neoclassical style takes hold
  61. 61. The Royal Crescent John Wood the Younger 1769-1775, Bath, England
  62. 62. Check out how different the back and the front look (front has the columns). No two houses are identical.
  63. 63. •Bath, England is a summer resort – naturally warmed waters have health benefits •Royal Crescent is 30 houses attached in a crescent shape – notable people have lived here •Roman-inspired design- Bath was an ancient Roman city
  64. 64. •Public rooms on 2nd floor- great view of hill below •Façade (this view) is Wood’s design, other side built to buyers’ tastes
  65. 65. •114 ionic columns frame windows •Typical English chimneys – rhythmically spaced along the roof Balustrade cornice
  66. 66. Coalbrookdale Bridge Abraham Darby and Thomas Pritchard 1776-1779, England
  67. 67. •1st substantial structure made of iron •Cast iron is brittle, but the design has kept the bridge in tact •Five parallel metal Roman arches
  68. 68. •Built in a town w/ deep connection to new industrial environment – factories and workers’ houses nearby •100-foot span •Functional, new technology, properties of material: all produced an unintended and revolutionary aesthetic •Light, open, skeletal structure – style catches on (Eiffel Tower?)
  69. 69. NEOCLASSICAL SCULPTURE •Mass production of metal (factories in Germany and England) – price of bronze fall •Cheap bronze = marble prices rise •The look of marble in architecture and sculpture was still desirable (that’s what the ancients used) •Thought sculptures should be unpainted marble (didn’t realize at the time that the ancients painted their sculptures) •Discovery of Pompeii inspires sculptors to work in marble •Elgin marbles come to London (remember that?) – really inspiring! •Sculptor Canova saw Neoclassical style as a continuation
  70. 70. •Not into ancient robes •Liked realistic figures posed in a realistic way with modern drapery •Carved of white marble, no paint
  71. 71. Cupid and Psyche Antonio Canova 1787-1793 marble • Canova came from a family of stone masons (how convenient!) • The most sought-after European sculptor of the Neoclassic period • Mythological subject for a private collector • Love story about Cupid, Venus’s son, and Psyche, a beautiful mortal who made Venus nervous Venus puts Psyche into a deep death-like sleep
  72. 72. • Jupiter takes pity on Cupid and Psyche and gives Psyche immortality • This is the scene when Cupid awakens Psyche with a kiss (most tender moment in the story) • Rococo eroticism mixed with Neoclassical element of attention to sight and touch (sensuality of flesh, classical nudes preferred) • So tempting to touch the smooth marble of this sculpture! – VERY polished • Chiaroscuro in marble • Great from multiple views because of negative space
  73. 73. Pauline Borghese as Venus Antonio Canova 1808, marble • Pauline Borghese was Napoleon’s sister • Posed as Venus, holding an apple (Venus’s symbol) • Pauline was famous for her disregard of morality • Not meant to be seductive, unrealistic pose • Private commission by her husband (few people allowed to see it) • Very risque for the wife of a ruler of Rome (Camillo Borghese)
  74. 74. • Nude portraits were unusual (usually strategic drapery) • Only the head is realistic (actually, idealized) – Did she pose nude? - nude torso is an idealized female form • She enjoyed the controversy of the semi-nude portrait • Borghese family has mythical ancestry – traced their lineage to Venus
  75. 75. A word about painting… •French Academy has an annual showcase of new art called the “SALON” (in the Salon Carre, in the Louvre) •Art critics and judges search for the best new art to display in the Salon •Your work is displayed in the Salon = you get famous and your work is worth much more $ •Salon is picky – prefers traditional standards, flawless technique, perfect perspective •Order of preference: history paintings (historical, religious, mythological subjects), portraits, landscapes, genre paintings, still lifes
  76. 76. • Modern subjects mixed with ancient elements • Mythological and Biblical scenes w/ modern context in mind • Paintings tell moral tales (“exemplum virtutis”) • Painting have a subtext – viewer must form an opinion of a person, situation, etc. • Symmetrical compositions w/ linear perspective
  77. 77. Cornelia Pointing to Her Children as Treasures Angelica Kauffmann 1785, oil on canvas
  78. 78. • Cornelia, a noble woman, is shown jewelry by a visitor who asks to see her jewels • Cornelia responds- gestures to her sons as “her jewels” (daughter is busy looking at jewelry box, not gestured to, hmmm) Exemplum virtutis: A good woman places her children above material possessions
  79. 79. • Story and setting are Roman (background resembles Italy) • A history painting made for an English patron after a trip to Italy • Warm, subdued lighting and tranquil grace • British patrons preferred Italian paintings, so Kauffmann (who was trained in Italy) became a successful history painter – one of two women named among the founding members of the Royal Academy
  80. 80. Samuel Adams John Singleton Copley 1770-1772, Oil on canvas • Adams demands that British troops leave Boston after the Boston Massacre • Adams points to charter and seal granted to Massachusetts by King William and Queen Mary • Grasps petition signed by Boston citizens
  81. 81. • Adams has a forceful and direct gaze – confronting the viewer • Focus on the head and hands • Figure is in the forefront of the picture plane • Rich colors • Dramatically lit • Conservative dress (brown suit and waistcoat) • Vivid realism • Meticulous handling of paint • Defiant stance • Moral force! • Emotion AND reason • Classical columns in background shadows = republican virtue, rationality, Enlightenment
  82. 82. The Death of General Wolfe Benjamin West (friends with Kauffmann) 1770, oil on canvas
  83. 83. • Shows the Battle of Quebec in 1759 • British General James Wolfe died in British victory over the French for control of Quebec during Seven Years’ War • Shocked other painters by depicting figures in modern dress instead of ancient garb (Neoclassical trend of classical ignored) • What a bold move! Considered “distasteful”
  84. 84. • Entire battle in background, English boats on right, battle raging at left, Quebec cathedral breaking through the smoke • Very short battle, French in disarray and retreating from battle scene • Wolfe died of sniper shots to wrist, side, and groin (not painted) • Actually died nearly alone at the base of a tree, but is surrounded here by friends and admirers • Native American represents North American setting, contemplates the consequences of Wolf’s victory (Native Americans actually fought on the French side)
  85. 85. • Wolfe has cleft chin, protruding eyes, small mouth, upturned nose – all of his unflattering features are minimized by the upward angle of his head (toward heaven) • Composition is in thirds, like triptych-like compositions of Renaissance • High Renaissance triangles • Religious association with victory – Protestantism beats Catholicism
  86. 86. • Dying Gaul, Pieta, Deposition – similar poses • Wolfe is bathed in a pool of light, posed like Christ being taken down from the cross (British flag above him takes the place of the Christian cross • Christ sacrificed himself for humanity, Wolfe for the good of the State • Emotional intensity- inspires Romantic movement in British painting
  87. 87. Self-Portrait with Two Pupils Adelaide Labille-Guiard 1785, oil on canvas •Labille-Guiard wanted to increase the number of female painters in France •Petitioned to end the restrictions on women •These causes are evident in this self-portrait – submitted it to the salon in 1785
  88. 88. •Monumental image (roughly 7x5 feet) •Fights sexist rumors that her paintings were done by men •Role-reversal- the only man in the painting is her muse bust of her father behind her) •Flattering appearance in Rococo tradition, but influenced by Enlightenment- women are important contributors to national life
  89. 89. Oath of the Horatii Jacques-Louis David 1784, oil on canvas
  90. 90. • Royal commission –reflection of Louis XIV’s taste and values • Believed art should improve public morals, banned indecent nudity from the Salon of 1775 • Commissioned history paintings (like this one)
  91. 91. • Three Roman brothers (the Horatii) do battle with three other brothers (the Curiatti- not in the painting) from a nearby city (based on 17th century drama Horace, which was based on ancient Roman historical texts) • Oath-taking was David’s idea • Pledging their fidelity to their father and Rome! All for one and one for all! • Arms outstretched toward their father – hold up swords and pledge to fight to the death for Rome • Weak, sad looking women and children on the right
  92. 92. • One of these women is a Horatiii engaged to one of the Curiatii brothers, and one is a sister of the Curiatii brothers (seem distressed) • Exemplum virtutis, contrast between bravery and emotional commitment to family ties
  93. 93. • Figures pushed forward in composition • Vigorous, powerful, animated forms • Sweeping gestures • Neoclassical drapery 1 2 3 • Caravaggio-like lighting • Non-Roman capitals • Tripartitie composition- each framed by an arch • This painting becomes an emblem of the French Revolution of 1789 • Lesson: You must sacrifice for the good of the state • French Revolution: abolished monarchy, who commissioned the piece to begin with (haha), took over education (no longer a job of the church), wrote declaration of human rights • David agrees with all these ideas – appointed minister of the arts when power shifts in 1792
  94. 94. Death of Marat Jacques-Marie David 1793, oil on canvas •David was the most important Neoclassical painter of his time – dominated French art during the Revolution and the reign of Napoleon •This painting commemorates the death of French Revolution leader, Jean- Paul Marat
  95. 95. •Marat was a radical journalist, wrote pamphlets urging the abolition of aristocratic privilege •Marat was stabbed to death in his bathtub by Charlotte Corday, a more moderate revolutionary who denounced the killing of the king – she saw him as the cause of 1792 riots in which political prisoners sympathetic to the king were killed •Decided Marat should pay for his actions with his life •Lived simply, packing cases used as furniture •Case used as a desk – set up by the tub so he can multitask
  96. 96. •Marat suffered from skin cancer- took baths for hours to relieve his symptoms •His body doesn’t show the cancer, but he wears a turban soaked in vinegar (thought to be a cure back then) •Killed with a butcher knife with blood still on the handle •Killed at the moment of issuing a letter of condolences •Inscription on desk resembles a tombstone –”To Marat, David, Year 2” – reflects the French Revolution’s reordering of the calendar •David played down the drama – shows us the quiet, still aftermath of murder – Dead Marat slumped in tub
  97. 97. •Right hand is still holding his quill pen •Left hand holds letter Corday (his murderer) handed him when she entered •Marat looks like a martyred saint •Caravaggio-like lighting
  98. 98. •Right arm similar to Christ in Michelangelo’s Pieta and Caravaggio’s Entombment •Marat is a Christ-like figure who gave his life for a greater cause (not religious, but political)
  99. 99. Lady Gaga portrait by Robert Wilson displayed at the Louvre as part of his “Living Rooms” exhibition. This new portrait recreates Jacques-Paul David`s “The Death of Marat”
  100. 100. A word about ROMANTICISM… • A movement that begins around 1789 and ends around 1848 (so we’ll see it in this chapter AND next chapter) • Romantic artists glorified the irrational side of human nature (topics that the Enlightenment ignores) – a celebration of emotions and subjective experiences, unconscious world of dreams and fantasies • John Henry Fuseli- famous Romantic artist – inspired by Michelangelo’s powerful expressive style- often included supernatural and irrational subjects in his artwork, such as…
  101. 101. The Nightmare John Henry Fuseli 1781 Oil on canvas
  102. 102. • Erotic theme – horse with glowing eyes (a male symbol), coming through parted red theatrical curtain, woman lying on bed in a tortured sleep, w/ submissive pose • Incubus sits on her chest, suffocating her, causing her erotic dream • Mara is an evil spirit in Norse mythology who has sex with and suffocates sleepers (a common subject in Fuseli’s work) •Doesn’t illustrate a nightmare •Illustrates the sensation of terror it produces •Figural style similar to Italian Mannerism •May reference a troubled romance and sexual dream Fuseli had about his intended fiancé (too poor to propose, didn’t declare his feelings, but insisted she couldn’t marry anyone else because they “got friendly” in a dream of his = she belonged to him
  103. 103. Elohim Creating Adam William Blake 1795 Color print finished in pen and watercolor
  104. 104. •William Blake – a friend of Fuseli’s •A poet, printmaker, and painter •Obsessed w/ the imagination – thought it helps us access the higher realm of the spirit (way more interesting than reason, which only shows us the lower world of matter •Created a series of 12 large color prints in 1795 (including this one) •Concerned with themes of good and evil, took elements from the Bible, Greek mythology, and British legend to create his own personal mythology
  105. 105. •Figures have sculpture-like sense of volume, muscular – shows influence of Michelangelo (whom Black admired) •Blake shows creation in a negative way •Giant worm (symbol of matter) twists around lower body of Adam •Adam looks anguished, stretches out like crucified Christ •Gloomy image makes viewer want to overcome his fallen nature •Elohim (Hebrew name for God) – looks anxious and desperate (not confident) •Creation looks tragic – human spirit falls to a state of material existence
  106. 106. Ancient of Days William Blake 1794 Etching •Blake illustrated his own poems, and works by others, including Dante •This image is from a book of his poems •Figure covers sun with his body •Opens fingers in an impossible way to measure the earth with calipers •Horizontal wind •Figure is Urizen, and evil Enlightenment figure of rational thinking
  107. 107. Vocabulary •ACADEMY: an institution whose main objectives include training artists in an academic tradition, ennobling the profession, and holding exhibitions •APOTHEOSIS: a type of painting in which the figures are rising heavenward •FETE GALANE: an 18th century French style of painting that depicts the aristocracy walking through a forested landscape •GRAND MANNER: a style of 18th century painting that features large works with figures posed as ancient statuary or before classical elements such as columns or arches •EXEMPLUM VIRTUTIS: a painting that tells a moral tale for the viewer •GRAND TOUR: a journey to Italy to absorb ancient and Renaissance sites •SALON: a government-sponsored exhibition of artworks held in Paris
  108. 108. FIN