Interstellar

Interstellar

interstellar cover

Director Christopher Nolan

The screenplay was written by Jonathan Nolan and Christopher Nolan.

PG-13 169min

Released : 7 November 2014

adventure, sci-fi, drama

The movie had a 165 million budget. It made 47.5 million opening weekend in the U.S. and by March 2015 188 million U.S. I am not one to put much weight into box office numbers especially money numbers. IMDb had a 8.7 rating. The movie won 1 Oscar and is #29 in the top 250. I am out of the loop on movies and hadn’t of even heard of this movie until my husband suggested it for this blog. I decided to Google “did people like Interstellar?” the over all conclusion from that was many people felt confused by the movie and didn’t like the artistic add-ons Nolan chose.

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This film showed a variety of camera shots, two of them were the camera shaking along with the truck the character were riding in along a bumpy dirt road, it made the viewer feel as if they were in the truck with the characters. Second there was an up close to actors faces like you are apart of the conversation. Jump cuts are the main use in the film for scene transfer.

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The character Tom played by Timothee Chalamet and Casey Affleck. He was the main Characters son. He represented normal people on earth trying to hang onto the life they knew.

tom 2
Timothee Chalamet
tom1
Casey Affleck.

The symbolism in this film is everywhere. There are a few blogs that interpret The Garden of Eden. There is also a symbolism regarding the fact that it the film touches on NASA being a big cover up for something larger and more secretive. There was also a blog talking about occult symbolism in regards to the Illuminati. No matter which way you want to look at it there was a lot of hidden messages hitting on large conspiracy theories, especially those popular in the U.S.

There is a scene where Cooper (the main character) has a flashlight in his hand that he sets on his shoulder between his face and neck. The foley artist added in a thump sound like one would expect to hear when setting a heavy flashlight against bone and flesh.

Film score is composed by Hans Zimmer. All of the songs were composed by Hans Zimmer. The producers were Christopher Nolan, Hans Zimmer and Alex Gibson. There were eight deluxe edition bonus tracks to the album.

Interstellar_soundtrack_album_cover

Nolan was able to film the whole movie with as little of CGI as possible and it showed. The settings were done beautifully and realistic. This link is a great clip on how Nolan pulled off not using the green screen the entire movie. The whole movie had an incredible realistic effect, very intimate.

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The particular setting that stood out to me was the black hole scene. It was all encompassing and beautiful. The light play and star effect was phenomenal. The black hole was exactly how I pictured it. I am not certain how much of this scene was real set or CGI but I love it all the same.

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Hair and makeup was done to look like everyday country people or just everyday people. The costumes were every day clothing as well.

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The lighting was very well used through out the movie my favorite was the light pillars mixed with dust in dusk lighting in a bedroom during a dust storm.

Computer generated graphics were used through out most of the film along with dramatic falls through space. There was time lapse in the script and scenes.

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The film was beautiful and interesting. I was confused at the beginning when it kept showing interviews of older people talking about the scenes taking place. To me the whole premise of the movie wasn’t that far off from the truth. It was a little more sci-fi than my thought process normally would go. I completely understand why this movie won an Oscar. I loved the movie and would recommend it to a friend.

Works Cited

Ashley, Kendall. “Christopher Nolan Shows How He Filmed Interstellar Without Using Green Screen,” Movie News. February 2015. Web: 4 August 2015<http://www.cinemablend.com/new/Christopher-Nolan-Shows-How-He-Filmed-Interstellar-Using-Green-Screen-68932.html>.

D’Souza, Warren. “Interstellar.” 2014. Retrieved from web 4 August 2015. <http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0816692/>.

Jay. “Interstellar (2014) The Secret Revelation,” Jay’s Analysis. 12 November 2014. Web: 4 August 2015. <http://jaysanalysis.com/2014/11/12/interstellar-2014-the-secret-revelation/>.

Illuminatiwatcher. “Illuminati & Occult Symbolism ‘Interstellar’” 17 January 2015. Web: 4 August 2015. <http://illuminatiwatcher.com/illuminati-occult-symbolism-interstellar/>.

“Interstellar (soundtrack).” Wikipedia The Free Encyclopedia. 31 May 2015. Web 4 August 2015. <https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Interstellar_(soundtrack)>.

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Neo-Expressionism in the Modern World

Neo Expressionism (Neo-Ex) came onto the art scene with a boom backed with critiques and backlash. Neo-expressionism is a broad term for most artwork done after 1975 and more prominent in the 1980’s that was used by German and Italian artists. It was an art movement that bucked the system of traditional art. Artists used traditional tools, easels painting, and casts and carved sculpture but what differed was their inspiration. The work had a more violent feel to it typically shown through taboo means. (moca) Neo-Ex art was a movement away from Minimalism art. The art expressed the artist’s individual expression.German artists used this form of art to deal with the repression of cultural history after World War II. Artists wanted to feel freedom under the constricted culture. Neo-Ex art helped the booming art market of the 1980’s.

This Neo-expressionism theme focuses on human forms in paintings.

Francesco Clemente (1952- )

Born in Naples, Italy. He has an early background in classical languages and literature, was briefly an architecture student at the University of Rome. He exhibited his works across Europe and later lived and worked in India. Clemente currently resides in New York City with his family and moved there in 1981. His art is a wide range and has worked with a number of different artists of all different genres.

scissors and butterflies
Scissors and Butterflies 1999 Oil on linen Currently: Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum, New York

There is a violent feel to the photo with distorted images of nude women and butterflies. The dark red and pink tones bring an evil feel to the painting. The depiction of the butterflies and body parts being cut has an erotic and sexually charged feel to it. This painting shows the freedom and constriction many artists felt. The sexually charged nature was taboo for the time period.

Jörg Immendorff (1945-2007)

Is one of Germany’s best-known political contemporary artists. Immerndorff was born in Blecked, Lower Saxony He studied under Joseph Beuys at the Dusseldorf Academy of Art. In 1976 he formed the “German-German Action Alliance” with A.R. Penck. Café Deutschland paintings were created from this. Immerndorff did paintings and sculptures. He was later diagnosed with ALS and learned to paint with his right hand after his left hand was no longer usable.

Café Deutschland I (1977-78) Oil on Canvas Museum Ludwig, Colongne, Germany
Café Deutschland I (1977-78) Oil on Canvas Currently: Museum Ludwig, Colongne, Germany

The first of a sixteen series. This painting shows the divide of Germany during the 1970’s and 1980’s. The dark colors in a nightmarish hell like setting are the first things one notices. Through out the whole painting there are small signs of the turmoil in Germany; the Brandenberg Gate dividing East and West Berlin is shown as a silhouette in one of the columns. There is a man trying to smash through the “Berlin Wall.” On the left is the eagle of the German Democratic Republic grasping a swastika. The series is a politically charged message expressed by Immendorff. The subjects are taboo and inappropriate for the times.

Georg Baselitz (1938- )

Was the earliest Neo-Ex group. Is known for his “upside-down” paintings that ignore the realities of the physical world. His paintings are a confrontation of the realities of modern age and a German artist in a postwar world. His art is influenced from a variety of art genera, African sculptures, Mannerist period, Soviet era illustration art are the more prominent ones. He was born in Deutschbaselitz, Saxony. His work is featured all over the globe. He currently lives and works in Germany and Italy.

Adieu 1982 Georg Baselitz born 1938 Purchased 1983 http://www.tate.org.uk/art/work/T03672
Adieu (1982) Oil on canvas Currently:Tate Gallery, London

This painting true to Baselitz’s “upside-down” works. There is no point of origin and the figures are suspended with empty space below them. The bodies are facing opposite directions moving away from each other leaving a violent emotion in the wake. The colors are bright and intense enhancing the violent feel.

Eric Fischl (1948- )

Is an American painter, sculptor and printmaker. Fischl taught at Nova Scotia College of Art and Design. He is now a senior critic at the New York Academy of Art. He was known for not painting what would be considered appropriate subject matter for his generation. Fischl still continues to be a controversial artist with his Tumbling Woman painting debuted after 9/11. He was born in New York City and now resides in Sag Harbor, Long Island with his landscapist wife April Gornik.

Bad Boy (1981) Oil on Canvas Private Collection, Zurich
Bad Boy (1981) Oil on Canvas Currently: Private Collection, Zurich

The painting shows a male and female figure in separate spaces. There is a lot of light and shadow play through out the painting. The female figure is left with a cage type imprint on her body from the light while laying in an animalistic figure. The brushstrokes are heavy and shadowed. The male figure is a young boy stealing from a purse or the whole purse. There is a sexual discomfort for the viewer of this painting, leaving mixed emotions.

Birthday Boy (1983) Oil on Canvas Currently: Unknown
Birthday Boy (1983) Oil on Canvas Currently: Unknown

This is another painting that is controversial, taboo and makes the viewer uncomfortable. The painting depicts a nude woman laying on a bed next to a nude adolescent boy. The boy is looking slightly at the woman’s nude body. The heavy brushstrokes and colors make the painting look slightly distorted. There is a lot of light and shadow play like his other paintings.

There is not a lot of information on this painting or the artist, I wanted to add in a more recent painting to show that Neo-expressionism hasn’t changed much though out the years. It may not be as popular now but it still has a violent and taboo feel to the works.

Lubomir Tkacik

Is a self-taught artist born in Kosice, Slovakia, where he still resides and works. He is known for abstract arts with a Neo-Ex feel. Tkacik is a poet, artist and writer.

Man in Blue (2008) Oil on Paper, Currently for sale
Man in Blue (2008) Oil on Paper, Currently: for sale

The painting shows a distorted image of an older man. The blue shades of color give the figure a sad tired look. There are heavy brushstrokes with light and shadow play. There is bit more of an abstract feel to Tkacik’s work.

I personally like to look at Neo-expressionism art. It has a way of drawing you in. There is a lot of detail with the shadow and light play. I love the bold colors and taboo depictions. I was surprised I enjoyed Neo-expressionism as much as I do since I do not like most abstract art and the genre has an abstract feel to it.

Works Cited

Alsdorf, Bridget. “Scissors and Butterflies, Francesco Clemente,” Guggenhiem Online. 2015. Web 15 July 2015.<http://www.guggenheim.org/new-york/collections/collection-online/artwork/5409>.

ArtPatron, “Lubomir Tkacik Profile and Art Works.” Web 15 July 2015. <http://www.artpatron.com/viewartist.php?id=371>.

Gagosian Gallery “Francesco Clemente.” 2015. Web 15 July 2015. <https://www.gagosian.com/artists/francesco-clemente>.

Gagosian Gallery “Georg Baselitz.” 2015. Web 15 July 2015. <https://www.gagosian.com/artists/georg-baselitz>.

Kluth, Michael “The Painter Jorg Immendorff,” Goethe-Institut e. V. 2006. Web. 15 July 2015. <http://www.goethe.de/kue/flm/prj/kub/bdk/en3933424.htm>.

Moca The Museum of Contemporary Art, Los Angeles, “Neo-Expressionism.” Collection: Moca’s First Thirty Years. 2010. Web 15 July 2015. <http://www.moca.org/pc/viewArtTerm.php?id=26>.

The Art Story, Modern Art Insight, “Neo-Expressionism,” The Art Story Foundation 2015. Web 15 July 2015. <http://www.theartstory.org/movement-neo-expressionism-artworks.htm#pnt_2>.

Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia, “Eric Fischl.” Modified 30 April 2015. Web 15 July 2015. <https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Eric_Fischl>.

Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia, “Jorg Immendorff.” Modified 6 July 2015. Web 15 July 2015. <https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Jörg_Immendorff>.

Great Depression and American Art

Tenement Flats by Millard Sheets
Tenement Flats by Millard Sheets 1933-1934 Oil on Canvas Currently: Smithsonian American Art Museum

Art during the Great Depression showed the realistic views of the world. The New Deal work-relief programs brought about the Public Works Art Project (PWAP.) The PWAP employed artists of all kinds to make work for government buildings. Many of these artists employed through the PWAP would be completely unknown if it were not for the Smithsonian. (smithsonianmag.com) The criteria for their work was “American scene” and many of these works are not considered “great” pieces of art but are still very much apart of American History. The paintings Baseball At Night by Morris Kantor and Tenement Flats by Millard Sheets are works done for the PWAP. There is an abstract feel to these paintings that was popular in the Europe scene but still depicts American scenes. I find these paintings wonderfully American, I would hang both of these in my home. I find it curious that these paintings are not considered “great” works.

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Baseball at Night by Millard Sheets 1934 Oil on Linen Currently: Smithsonian American Art Museum

 Photography during the Great Depression had a political and journalistic feel to it. Every picture during this time is a stark reality to what was going on around the country. Poverty, fighting for jobs, the Dust Bowl/ Dirty Thirties and tough jobs are all shown in photography from this time. There are a ton of wonderful photo galleries online; I picked a few of the ones that stuck out to me. These photos are more personally emotional and remind me of the stories my Grandparents told about the Great Depression. I find the photography during this time very emotional, disturbing and beautiful.

peapickers
‘Migrant pea pickers camp in the rain.” California, February, 1936. Photographer: Dorothea Lange. (Adler)
migrantmother
“The photograph that has become known as “Migrant Mother” is one of a series of photographs that Dorothea Lange made in February or March of 1936 in Nipomo, California. Lange was concluding a month’s trip photographing migratory farm labor around the state for what was then the Resettlement Administration. In 1960, Lange gave this account of the experience: I saw and approached the hungry and desperate mother, as if drawn by a magnet. I do not remember how I explained my presence or my camera to her, but I do remember she asked me no questions. I made five exposures, working closer and closer from the same direction. I did not ask her name or her history. She told me her age, that she was thirty-two. She said that they had been living on frozen vegetables from the surrounding fields, and birds that the children killed. She had just sold the tires from her car to buy food. There she sat in that lean- to tent with her children huddled around her, and seemed to know that my pictures might help her, and so she helped me. There was a sort of equality about it. (From: Popular Photography, Feb. 1960). ” (Adler)
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Bud Fields and his family. Alabama. 1935 or 1936. Photographer: Walker Evans. (Adler)
dustbowl
“Farmer and sons, dust storm, Cimarron County, Oklahoma, 1936. Photographer: Arthur Rothstein. The drought that helped cripple agriculture in the Great Depression was the worst in the climatological history of the country. By 1934 it had desiccated the Great Plains, from North Dakota to Texas, from the Mississippi River Valley to the Rockies. Vast dust storms swept the region.” (Adler)

 Music during the Great Depression was a way for people to express their anguish and despair; it was also used as a moral booster. “The United States Needs Prayer, Everywhere,” sung by Lulu Morris and chorus and “Brother Can You Spare a Dime?” by E.Y. Harberg were popular songs during this era. Both songs are about hopes of better times and the troubled nation. A song about the Civilian Conservation Corps (CCC) illustrates the hard work required, “Loveless CCC,” sung by Tommy Rhoads. The CCC was a project stemmed from the Public Works Projects created by Roosevelt administration. (Loveless C.C.C. Illustrated) There is a wonderful video with this song that shows pictures from the CCC work, “Loveless CCC” Illustrated.

Works Cited

Adler, Jerry. “1934: The Art of the New Deal” Smithsonian Magazine June 2009. Web: 6 July 2015. <http://www.smithsonianmag.com/arts-culture/1934-the-art-of-the-new-deal-132242698/?no-ist>.

“Loveless C.C.C. Illustration,” Library of Congress. Web: 6 July 2015. <http://www.loc.gov/item/ihas.200197402/>.

Nelson, Cary. Modern American Poetry. “Great Depression Photo Essay.” Web: 5 July 2015. <http://www.english.illinois.edu/maps/depression/photoessay.htm>.

Smithsonian American Art Museum and the Renwick Gallery. “Search Collections, Tenement Flats.” Web: 6 July 2015. <http://americanart.si.edu/collections/search/artwork/?id=12930>.

Smithsonian American Art Museum and the Renwick Gallery. “Search Collections, Baseball at Night.” Web: 7 July 2015. <http://americanart.si.edu/collections/search/artwork/?id=22262>.

“United States Needs Prayer, Everywhere,” Library of Congress. Web 6 July 2015.<http://www.loc.gov/item/ihas.200196312/>.

Love of Impressionism Art

I love Impressionism paintings. This style of painting is one of the only styles I would want in my house. The blurred colors and details are beautiful, I imagine the artists painting his feelings into these paintings. Impressionist art looks like “freestyle” art. The paintings aren’t statement piece paintings but are still beautiful to look at and find all the different details of color and brush strokes/ techniques. The Seine At Asnieres by Renoir has beautiful use of colors; the brushstrokes make the painting look textured. The Croquet Party by Edouard Manet shows the blurred faces and intericate brush strokes.

"The Seine at Asnieres" by Pierre-Auguste Renoir 1879
The Seine at Asnieres (the Skiff) by Pierre-Auguste Renoir              
The Croquet Party by Edouard Manet
The Croquet Party by Edouard Manet 1873 Painted in Paris, France Oil on Canvas Currently: Städel Museum, Frankfurt am Main, Germany

Comparing Impressionism paintings to Pre-Raphaelite artwork, there is a stark difference between the details of the paintings. There is a scholarly feel to the pre-Raphaelite paintings, extreme realistic detail, bold colors, and sharp lines. I find this style to ridged,  there is a great amount of detail into every painting but it looks like a lot of work. If you look at Proserpine by Dante Gabriel Rossetti you can see the dark colors, strict lines, hidden brushstrokes and very detailed face. The only thing that Impressionism paintings and pre-Raphaelite paintings have in common is that the artists were both apart of large art movements.

Proserpine by Dante Gabriel Rossetti  1874  Oil on Canvas  Currently: Tate Britain, London, England, UK
Proserpine by Dante Gabriel Rossetti
1874
Oil on Canvas
Currently: Tate Britain, London, England, UK
Christ in the House of His Parents by John Everett Millais  1849 Oil on Canvas  Currently: Private Collection
Christ in the House of His Parents by John Everett Millais
1849
Oil on Canvas
Currently: Private Collection

Then taking a look at Romanticism art, which happens to be a favorite style of mine. Both of these styles have an emotional pull to them. Romanticism art is more whimsical and floaty with strong details at every view of the painting. Even the darker subjects like Death of Sardanapalus by Eugene Delacroix has a whimsical element to it. The colors are similar to those used in impressionism paintings.  The Lady of Shallott by John William Waterhouse is one of my favorite paintings. It has a pit of an Irish feel to it. I enjoy looking at this style; it makes me feel as if I were being taken to another land full of magic.

Death of Sardanapalus by Eugene Delacroix  1827 Canvas Currently: Musée du Louvre, Paris, France
Death of Sardanapalus by Eugene Delacroix
1827
Canvas
Currently: Musée du Louvre, Paris, France
The Lady of Shallott by John William Waterhouse 1888 Oil on Canvas  Currently:Tate Britain, London, England, UK
The Lady of Shallott by John William Waterhouse
1888
Oil on Canvas
Currently:Tate Britain, London, England, UK

All of these styles of paintings varies in their own way and have beautiful elements throughout the works. I enjoy all of the styles of paintings from this era.

References:

Easby, Rebecca J. “ A Beginner’s Guide to Pre-Rapaelites.” KhanaAcadamy, 2015. Retrieved 29 June 2015. <https://www.khanacademy.org/humanities/becoming-modern/Victorian-art-architecture/pre-raphaelites/a/a-beginners-guide-to-the-pre-raphaelites>.

Esaak, Shelley. “Romantisim:Art History Basics 101,” About Education, 2015. Retrieved 30 June 2015. <http://arthistory.about.com/od/renaissancearthistory/a/Romanticism-101.htm>.

French Impressionism. Dr. Lori “What is Impressionism.” Masterpiece Technologies. Retrieved 29 June 2015. <http://www.drloriv.com/Tips/ID/22/What-is-Impressionism>.

Pre-Raphaelite Brotherhood. Wikipedia. Retrieved 29 June 2015. <https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pre-Raphaelite_Brotherhood>.

Wikiart.org

The Revolutionary Change to Art From the Revolutions-1700’s

Revolution and Art during the neoclassical era specifically in the 1700’s was stoic, politically driven pieces. Many times the artists’ political views and feelings were portrayed in their art during this era. The art showed the revival of classical thought, seriousness of the times and politically-charged spirit. “Neoclassicism is characterized by clarity of form, sober colors, shallow space, strong horizontal and verticals that render that subject matter timeless and Classical subject matter.”(Gersh-Nesic) The American Revolution launched a global Age of Revolutions, which made the transformation of this era complete.

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“The Sortie Made by the Garrison of Gibraltar” John Trumbull 1789 Current Location: Metropolitan Museum of Art

The Sortie Made by the Garrison Gibraltar by John Trumbull was done with oil on canvas in 1770. It shows a Spanish officer given respect while dying in the Great Siege of Gibraltar in 1781. (The Collection Online) The painting shows the seriousness of the event. This painting could be used in political agenda showing pride and respect to a fallen comrade.

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“The Death of General Wolfe” Benjamin West 1770 Current Location: National Gallery of Canada, Ottawa

The Death of General Wolfe by Benjamin West, done with oil on canvas in 1789, is actually a painting depicting an event from the Seven Years’ War but with the characters in modern clothing tying into the Revolutions during this time. In this painting he used a classical style but instead of the typical Bible depiction chose a semi-current event that had a political somber pull. (Zygmont) The colors are dark; the characters are painted with clarity. This painting is a classic painting to this day.

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“The Death of Genereal Warren at the Battle of Bunker’s Hill” John Trumbull 1775 Current Location: Museum of Fine Arts, Boston, Massachusetts

John Trumbull, The Death of General Warren at the Battle of Bunker Hill shows a turning point in the American Revolutionary War. Trumbull painted a variety of these paintings. Trumbull witnessed the Battle of Bunker Hill in person at a colonial army camp. The painting is classical neoclassical art, sober colors, shallow space, and classical subject matter. This painting is a politically spirited painting that many today still think of when talking about the American Revolution.

This is a song “Yankee Doodle” written by Richard Shuckburgh is a song most of us grew up learning in school. This is a classic song in the United States and dates back to this era. Warning you will be singing this song all day now.

Works Cited

Art Gallery Foyer “Your Gateway to the American Revolution“ Web 18 June 2015<http://www.americanrevolution.org/artmain.php>

Gersh-Nesic, Beth. “Neoclassicism, an introduction” Baroque and Neoclassical Art In Eurpoe, 2015 Khan Academy. Web 18 June 2015. <https://www.khanacademy.org/humanities/monarchy-enlightenment/neo-classicism/a/neoclassicism-an-introduction>

Lovell, Margaretta M. “The American Revolution Reborn.” Vol. 14 No. 3, 2014 Common-place The Interactive Journal of Early American Life, Inc. Web 18 June 2015. <http://www.common-place.org/vol-14/no-03/lovell/#.VYHvy864lPM>.

The Collection Online. “The Sortie Made by the Garrison of Gibraltar.” 2015 The Metropolitan Museum of Art. Web 18 June 2015. <http://www.metmuseum.org/collection/the-collection-online/search/12828>.

Yankee Doodle. 9 June 2015. Web 18 June 2015. <https://en.wikipedia.org/?title=Yankee_Doodle>.

Zygmont, Bryan. “Benjamin West’s The Death of General Wolfe.” British Colonies to the Early Republic, 2015 Khan Academy. Web 18 June 2015. <https://www.khanacademy.org/humanities/art-americas/british-colonies/colonial-period/a/benjamin-wests-the-death-of-general-wolfe>.

The Council of Trent and The Conversion on the Way to Damascus

The Conversion on the Way to Damascus by Caravaggio

This painting was painted on cypress wood with oil. It was done for Cerasi Chapel of the church of Santa Maria del Popolo, in Rome in 1601. The painting depicts Saul (Apostle Paul) on the road to Damascus, Chapter 9 of Acts of the Apostles. It shows the moment Saul is overcome by the spirit of Jesus Christ. This is one of two paintings Caravaggio did for the Cerasi Chapel of the church of Santa Maria del Poplolo, the other is the inverted Crucifixion of St. Peter. This is the second version of The Conversion Caravaggio painted. The painting is still in Santa Maria del Poplolo, Rome.

The Conversion on the Way to Damascus by Caravaggio
The Conversion on the Way to Damascus by Caravaggio

The painting shows Saul as a broken down, overcome man looking up at a horse and another man. The painting is overall very dark depiction of Saul becoming overwhelmed by the spirit of Jesus Christ. The bright red at the bottom of the painting and the way Saul has his arms spread, make it look as though the viewer is apart of the painting. The play on light from the white on the horse to the dark background was typical way of painting during this time. It makes the painting more dramatic and emotional. There is an overlapping effect of figures making the painting look a bit jumbled. This was very different from Renaissance paintings that had clear lines of each figures. Although the same bold colors and play of light and dark was the same. If you compare The Descent from the Cross by Rogier van der Weyden to The Conversion on the Way to Damascus by Caravaggio you can see the difference in lines of the figures. There is also a noticeable difference between the drama and emotion. Both are emotional painting but The Conversion on the Way to Damascus has a darker emotional pull.

The Descent from the Cross by van der Weyden
The Descent from the Cross by van der Weyden

It was a painting that the Council of Trent wanted paintings to be like, full of emotion and correctly depicted stories from the Bible. “This stricter style of Catholic Biblical art – launched by the Council of Trent (1545-63) – was designed to highlight the theological differences between Catholicism and Protestantism, by focusing on the mysteries of the faith, as well as the roles of the Virgin Mary and the Saints.” (visual arts) This painting would lead to the telling of the story of the Apostle Paul, which is exactly what the Catholic Church was after. They wanted more focus on the teachings of the bible to bring people back to the Catholic Church. Paintings were a way to reach everyone, even the illiterate. This painting especially has a political church connection with the story being about a man who denounced Christianity and then became Apostle Paul after being approached by the Spirit of Jesus Christ.

I am not sure what to think of this painting. It caught my eye because of the dramatic light and darkness of the painting. It is a very dark depiction that is not something I am normally drawn to. I like the detail of Saul’s body and the colors used on the horse. Normally any horse associated with Jesus Christ is white bodied. I have always liked the story of Apostle Paul, which might be the reason I was drawn to the painting. The emotion with this painting is strong. I can almost feel the fear Saul felt during this moment. Many Bible stories focus on the happy feeling afterwards not the emotion during a time one fears of God.

Works Cited

Allart. “Conversion on the way to Damascus.” Michelangelo Merisi da Caravaggio, (1571 � 1610), Web Gallery, 2015. Web 10 June 2015 <http://allart.biz/photos/image/Michelangelo_Caravaggio_18_Conversion_on_the_Way_to_Damascus_1601l.html>.

Bc.edu. “Caravaggio: The Conversion on the Road to Damascus.” Caravaggio page, Art and History Page, Boston College. Web 10 June 2015.<http://www.bc.edu/bc_org/avp/cas/his/CoreArt/art/bar_cvggo_conv2.html>.

Harris, B., Zucker, S. “The Protestant Reformation.” Khan Academy, 2015. Web 10 June 2015.<https://www.khanacademy.org/humanities/history/1500-1600-Renaissance-Reformation/protestant-reformation/a/an-introduction-to-the-protestant-reformation>.

Visual-arts. “Catholic Counter-Reformation Act.” Encyclopedia of Art History, 2015. Web 10 June 2015.<http://www.visual-arts-cork.com/history-of-art/catholic.htm>.

Humanism and The Adoration of Magi

Botticelli_-_Adoration_of_the_Magi_(Zanobi_Altar)_-_Uffizi

The Adoration of Magi by Sandro Botticelli. This painting is a deception of the wise men/ kings bringing Mother Mary and Baby Jesus gifts. It is an oil painting on panel, done around 1475. An Italian banker, Gaspare di Zanobi del Lama for a chapel in Florence, commissioned the painting. The Italian banker had ties to the Medici Family. It is currently in the Uffizi in Florence (Virtualuffizi).

The portal of The Virgin and Christ was a popular theme to be painted during this time. It is said that Botticelli painted himself as an onlooker of the adoration, the blonde man on the bottom right. He also added the faces of some of the Medici Family. “Cosimo and his sons, Piero and Giovanni represent the Wise Kings, with Giuliano and Lorenzo as princes” (PBS).

Botticelli shows Humanism in the way he portrayed the characters of the painting in a classical Greek and Roman nature. The faces of his characters are peaceful and melancholy, which was a classic example of Botticelli’s work (Artble).

The background is classical humanism art with perspective and depth. There is also a Greek style temple in the background giving more of the Greek flare. The light through out the painting gives the painting a three dimensional effect. (boundless.com) Botticelli portrays “Mary and Jesus” as adored and loved, in a natural setting. There is a spiritual beauty behind the “mother and baby” being admired by all on lookers. Botticelli painted a very religious and moving painting.

I find the painting to be very moving. I like the bold, dark colors in contrast to the background and sky.  It makes the characters really “pop” in the painting. I like how there is every angle of character faces. It makes the viewer feel more apart of the painting. I find it amusing that Botticelli painted his face along with the Medici family faces, it was a very political move on his part. I also like how classically beautiful Mary’s face is.

 Works Cited

Artble. “Sandro Bottcielli.” Sandro Bottcielli Home Page, Artble, 2015. Web. 30 May 2015. <http://www.artble.com/artists/sandro_botticelli>.

Boundless. “Humanistic Art.” Boundless Art History. Boundless, 01 Jun. 2015. Web. 31 May 2015.<https://www.boundless.com/art-history/textbooks/boundless-art-history-textbook/italy-s-renaissance-in-the-1400s-ce-23/humanism-151/humanistic-art-589-5750/>.

PBS. “Sandro Bottcielli.” Renissance, Medici Family. 2015. Web. 1 June 2015. <http://www.pbs.org/empires/medici/renaissance/botticelli.html>.

VirtualUffizi. “Sandro Botticelli Alessandro Filipepi.” The Virtual Uffizi Gallery. 2015 Web 01 June 2015. <http://www.virtualuffizi.com/sandro-filipepi-called-botticelli.html>.