Archive | March, 2011


29 Mar
Some impressionism paintings I love, but others I do not like so much.  There are qualities about different works that catch and hold my attention, while others are not so great to me.  I love the fact that artists dabbed primary colors together, making it appear that it is one color from a distance.  The style began with the “unfinished” painting Impression, Sunrise by Claude Monet that was created in 1872 in Paris was said to be an impression of a sunrise.  This comment gave the movement of Impressionism its name.

Impression, Sunrise by Claude Monet

Impressionism was influenced by the rise of photography in the late 19th century.  The style was also influenced by Japanese printmaking and Japanese decorations.  The quick, thick brustrokes that makes up this style are still popular in artworks today.  I enjoy the works of Impressionism that are more detailed instead of the very think brushstokes.  A painting that catches my eye is Le Moulin de la Gallette painted by Pierre-Auguste Renoir in Paris in 1876.

Le Moulin de la Gallette painted by Pierre-Auguste Renoir

In general, I am not a fan of the Impressionism style.  There are a handful that I found that were eye catching and interesting, but most are not very interesting to me.  You receive a different feeling/appriciation in Impressionism that you do not get from other periods of art.  The techique used in Impresionism is an art form in itself.  Impressionism art is more free feeling and you do not have to worry about figuring out with the art is about, when almost all other art you do have to in order to know what it going on.  Impressionism art is typically landscapes so there is no need to wonder.  I personally enjoy analysing art so I prefer works from other eras.  An example of a painting that you have to think about in order to understand it is The Meeting by Jean-Honore Fragonard in 1771 from the Rococo period.

The Meeting by Jean-Honore Fragonard

You can see well defined lines and detail in this painting that you do not see in Impressionist works.  There is a story behind the painting that is unknown just from a quick glance.  My final example is a peice from the Renaissance era.  It is Lady With the Ermine by Leonardo DaVinci and was created in 1489-90 in Krakow.


Lady With the Ermine by Leonardo da Vinci

The painting is a portrait and leave you wondering who the woman is and what makes her so important to have a painting made of her.



Work Cited

DaVinci, Leonardo. Lady With the Ermine. 1489-90. The Princes Czartoryskis’ Museum, Krakow. Krakow Info. 2001. Web. 30 Mar. 2011.

Fragonard, Jean-Honore. The Meeting. 1771. Frick Museum, New York City. Ancien Regime. Boston College. Web. 30 Mar. 2011.

Monet, Claude. Impression: Sunrise. 1872. Musée Marmottan Monet, Paris. Art Renewal Center. Art Renewal Center, 25 Jan. 2005. Web. 30 Mar. 2011.

Renoir, Pierre-Auguste. Le Moulin De La Gallette. 1876. Musée Du Louvre, Paris. The Art Wolf. Web. 30 Mar. 2011.



Jean-Honore Fragonard’s “The Swing”

8 Mar
"The Swing"

Jean-Honore Fragonard's "The Swing"

The Swing (also known as The Happy Accidents of the Swing) by Jean-Honore Fragonard was created in 1767.  It is located in the Wallace Collection in London.  The painting is considered to be one of the major masterpieces of the rococo era.  The painting is of a woman on a swing that is being pushed by her husband.  There is another man hiding in the bushes in front of her watching.  Her husband is in the background of the painting and is unaware of the other man watching.  The paint was originally requested to be a portrait of the Baron’s mistress on a swing being pushed by a bishop, but Fragonard replaced him with a smiling husband instead.  When the lady goes high on the swing, the man can see under her dress.  She is flicking her own shoe off in the direction of the statue of Cupid and he back is turned from the statue of two angels that is beside her husband.  It was said in the memoirs of French dramatist and songwriter, Charles Colle, that the painting was asked to be done by Gabriel Francois Doyen of him and his mistress, but he was too embarrassed and passed the commission onto Fragonard.  This painting connects with the rise of the middle class because you can see how careless the higher class folk were.  You can assume that they spent a lot of money on their clothes and statues.  This was most likey painted before the lower class started fighting back.  I found this painting to be extremely beautiful.  The colors and intricate detail caught my attention right away.  Even though the message of the painting is not exactly a pretty one, I still find the painting as a whole to be beautiful.  The Rococo era of art is amazing to me.  Jean-Honore Fragonard’s painting are all very, very beautiful and I encourage you to look through some of his other works.

Works Cited

Fragonard, Jean-Honore. The Swing. 1766. The Wallace Collection, London. Ancien Regime – Rococo. Web. 8 Mar. 2011.

“Jean Honora Fragonard: Biography from” Wiki Q&A Combined with Free Online Dictionary, Thesaurus, and Encyclopedias. Reference Answers. Web. 09 Mar. 2011.