Paintings

Luncheon on the Grass. How Édouard Manet Founded Modern Art

In 1863, Edouard Manet suffered a double defeat. At first, his work “Luncheon on the Grass” was not accepted into the Paris Salon. This was the main exhibition where you could show the public your work. But that year many were refused. Therefore, Emperor Napoleon III ordered an exhibition for such works. But even there, …

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Why The Last Day of Pompeii by Bryullov is a masterpiece

The phrase “The Last Day of Pompeii” is recognized by everyone, because the death of this ancient city was once depicted by Karl Bryullov (1799-1852). In such wise, the artist experienced an incredible triumph. At first, in Europe, since he created the artwork in Rome. Italians crowded outside his hotel to greet the genius. Walter …

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“La Fornarina” by Raphael.  The Story of Love and Secret Marriage 

In his later years, Raphael created the portrait of a woman (1519).  She clearly played a key role in the life of the Master.  She has a bracelet with the inscription “Raphael of Urbino” on her forearm. Looks like a looped bird. There is no doubt, who she belongs to.  It turned out, her relationship with Raphael was not limited to love affair.  When the painting was cleaned and restored in 1999, a …

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“Irises” by Van Gogh. About the Artist’s Floral Masterpiece

Van Gogh created the work “Irises” in a critical moment of his life.  While being in a clinic for the mentally ill, in Saint-Remy (southeast of France).  Several months prior to that, he sliced off his earlobe using a razor and had suffered a nervous breakdown.  Since then, about once a month he got epileptic seizures.  He fall into oblivion for several hours.  It is generally believed that after …

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The Great Wave by Hokusai. What is the secret of its popularity

The Great Wave by Katsushika Hokusai is the most famous work of an oriental master around the world. This image is so popular that it has covered millions of mugs, jewelry, and T-shirts. In terms of the number of copies, it can easily compete with Botticelli’s “Venus” and the angels of Raphael’s “Sistine Madonna”. How …

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The Swing by Fragonard. The central masterpiece of the Rococo era

You don’t always feel like watching insightful paintings. Sometimes you want something light and airy. Let’s say, an art dessert. Like marshmallows with creme brulee flavor. Or whipped cream with berry syrup. Of course, the most “dessert” paintings works in the Rococo style. And the most famous of them is the Swing by Jean–Honore Fragonard (1732-1806). A girl in a peach dress look like a strawberry on a bouffant meringue and cream cake. What is Fragonard’s Swing so precious? You shouldn’t treat …

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The Birth of Venus by Botticelli. The secret of divine beauty

We see Venus – the marvelous goddess. The wind gods Zephyr and Aura are driving the shell to the shore. Where the seasons nymph Ora is waiting to cover her with a flower-patterned veil. Venus is incredibly beautiful. This is one of the most enchanting images of the Renaissance era. If the goddess of love really existed, she would look just like this. She couldn’t be more beautiful. But for the feet that Botticelli always shows in a special way. Apart from that, you …

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Return of the Prodigal Son by Rembrandt. Why it’s a masterpiece

Return of the Prodigal Son. Old father’s mind is at peace again. His youngest son has come back. He doesn’t hesitate to forgive him for the dissipated heritage. No reproaches. Only mercy. All-forgiving parental love. And what about the son? He reached the depths of despair. Poor and ragged, he forgot his pride. He fell …

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7 Most Famous Paintings of Russian Artists

These paintings are known to every Russian person since childhood. They are an integral part of Russian culture. And if you are interested in it, it is important to know these pictures. 1. The Last Day of Pompeii by Karl Bryullov (1833) The Russians learn about the tragedy of Pompey primarily dueto Karl Bryullov (1799-1852). …

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Lion Hunt by Rubens. Emotions, Dynamics and Luxury “in one Bottle”

How to combine chaos with harmony? How to make mortal danger beautiful? How to depict movement on a fixed canvas? Peter Paul Rubens knew how to do it all masterly. And all these seemingly incompatible things we see in his painting “Lion Hunt”. The Lion Hunt and Baroque If you love baroque, then most likely …

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