Jacques-Louis David, ll giuramento degli Orazi, 1785. Image source: wikipedia.it
NEOCLASSICISM: WHAT IT IS AND WHEN IT DEVELOPED
In my blog I’ve often mentioned Neoclassicism. It happened when I talked about my visit to the exhibition “From Hayez to Boldini” in Brescia, and when I showed you the images of the new rooms dedicated to Antonio Canova at the Gallerie dell’Accademia in Venice.
I’ve been thinking about a post dedicated to Neoclassicism for a while, in order to explain once and for all in which period this movement developed and who the major artists of this movement are.
In this post you’ll find a definition of Neoclassicism.
René Magritte, Il figlio dell’uomo, 1964.
SURREALISM: WHEN IT DEVELOPED AND WHAT IT REPRESENTS
Surrealism, more than an art movement, was a cultural movement, heir of Dadaism.
The Surrealist manifesto, written by André Breton, dates back to 1924, and it affirms that surreal is the only way to reach a superior reality, thanks to the fusion of two realities which characterize the human life: waking life and dream.
BAROQUE ART: THE ARTISTS OF THE BAROQUE PERIOD
When I admire a Baroque masterpiece I always situate the artists of that period in the world of cinema. A far as I’m concerned, the artists of Baroque art would have been directors of films with spectacular special effects.
When I see an artwork I often imagine that the artist who created it today might be an artist like Damien Hirst or an architect and designer like Zaha Hadid or someone else.
Toward the end of the 16th century in Italy, a generation of artists who created works which developed a new style, was born: Baroque art.
In the hands of the Church and European kingdoms art became a powerful propaganda and persuasion tool, capable of astonishing, but also of transmitting religious dogmas after the Protestant Reformation.
Image source: ArteWorld.it
STILL LIFE: CARAVAGGIO AND THE BASKET OF FRUIT
Still life Caravaggio. Caravaggio’s Basket of Fruit is considered to be the first Italian still-life painting, a pictorial genre which already existed and had a long tradition behind, and whose undisputed masters were the Flemish painters.
In Italy the use of still life was only a decorative addition, but thanks to Caravaggio at last it became an independent subject.
Caravaggio with his Basket of Fruit gave still life new dignity, by putting it on the same level as figurative painting.
Caravaggio didn’t search for aesthetically pleasing representations, but he searched for reality, because to him painting meant to accept life as it is, without decorations and with all its imperfections.
Il Campo di Rialto, Canaletto. Image source: Wikipedia.it
One of the most fascinating events in the European painting is the birth and development of Vedutismo (cityscape painting) in the 18th century, of which the Venetian painter Giovanni Antonio Canal, known as Canaletto, was the main proponent.
His vedute (views) of Venice and London, as well were sought-after mainly by Anglo-Saxon collectors, who loved urban landscapes, and found in Canaletto’s works detailed and realistic images of what they could see and live in the 18th-century cities.
READ ALSO: Things to see in Venice.