History Painting: Definition, Characteristics, Types читать ~5 мин.
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What is History Painting? (Definition & Characteristics) Derived from the Italian word " istoria " (narrative), the term ’ history painting ’ refers to any picture with a high-minded or heroic narrative (message) as illustrated by the exemplary deeds of its figures. Originally dominated by religious paintings, the category expanded during the Italian Renaissance to include works depicting themes from mythology, literature, or history, typically executed in a large-scale format. For the world’s greatest exponents of this type of art, see: Best History Painters.
What are the Different Types of History Painting? There are five main categories of "History Painting": religious, mythological, allegorical, literary and historical. But please note that, whichever category the painting belongs to, its message must be edifying and worthy of depiction.
(1) Religious history paintings. This speaks for itself. It involves any type of picture with a religious narrative – including Christian (Catholic, Protestant), Islamic, Hindu, Buddhist, Jewish or tribal religion. Good examples include: Descent From the Cross (Deposition) (c.1435-40, Prado, Madrid) by Roger van der Weyden, and The Avignon Pieta (1454-6, Louvre, Paris) by Enguerrand Quarton. For general themes from Christianity, see: Christian art (150-2000). For later works, see: Protestant Reformation Art (c.1520-1700), as well as Catholic Counter-Reformation Art (1560-1700).
(2) Mythological history paintings. Myths are stories developed to explain unaccountable phenomena in the world. Mythological painting includes any picture illustrating a mythical story, fable or legend. Popular themes included legends surrounding Greek gods (e.g. Ares, Aphrodite, Apollo, Artemis, Athena, Demeter, Dionysus, Hephaestus, Hera, Hermes, Hestia, Poseidon, and Zeus), or mythical stories of Roman deities like: Apollo, Diana, Juno, Jupiter, Mars, Mercury, Neptune and Venus). Examples include: Bacchus and Ariadne (1520-23) and Bacchanal of the Andrians (1523-5) by Titian; Jupiter and Io (1533, Vienna) by Correggio; Allegory with Venus and Cupid (1540-50) by Bronzino; Rape of the Daughters of Leucippus (1618, Alte Pinakothek, Munich) and Judgement of Paris (1635, National Gallery, London) by Rubens; Abduction of the Sabine Women (1634-5, Metropolitan Museum) and Et in Arcadia Ego (1637, Louvre) by Nicolas Poussin; The Rokeby Venus (1647-51, National Gallery, London) by Velazquez. Suicide of Lucretia (c.1666, Minneapolis Institute of Arts) by Rembrandt van Rijn; The Colossus (1810, Prado, Madrid) by Goya; Saturn Devouring his Son (1819-23, Prado, Madrid) by Goya; Pasiphae (1943, Metropolitan Museum of Art) by Jackson Pollock; and Three Studies for Figures at the Base of a Crucifixion (1944, Tate Collection) by Francis Bacon.
(3) Allegorical history paintings. An allegory is a story containing a hidden meaning. Allegorical pictures typically use people or objects that symbolize (or represent) other people or things. Examples include: Allegory of Good and Bad Government (1338-9, Siena) by Ambrogio Lorenzetti; Garden of Earthly Delights (1500-5, Prado Museum, Madrid) by Hieronymus Bosch; and The Tempest (1508, Venice Academy Gallery) by Giorgione. For a modern example, see: The Artist’s Studio – A Real Allegory (1855, Musee d’Orsay) by Courbet.
(4) Literary history paintings. A narrower category (sometimes included within Mythological category, above) consisting of narrative paintings based on themes taken from literature (not involving mythological stories). Popular literary works include the plays of William Shakespeare, the poems of Henry Wadsworth Longfellow, Alfred, Lord Tennyson (1809-92) and classics like Alice in Wonderland by Lewis Carroll. Paintings include: Eve tempted by the Serpent (1800, Victoria and Albert Museum) by William Blake; Ophelia (1852, Tate Collection) by John Everett Millais; The Reconciliation of the Montagues and Capulets (1854, Yale Center for British Art) by Frederic Leighton; Dante’s Dream (1871, Walker Art Gallery) by Dante Gabriel Rossetti; and Lady of Shalott (1888, Tate Collection) by John Waterhouse.
(5) Historical history painting. The most straightforward category, it embraces all pictures depicting an event or a moment in history, or a historical figure who embodies a clear message. Examples include Battle of San Romano (1438-55; National Gallery London; Uffizi Florence; Louvre Paris) by Paolo Uccello; School of Athens (1509-11, Fresco, Stanza della Segnatura, Vatican) by Raphael; The Surrender of Breda (1635) by Velazquez; The Third of May, 1808 (1814, Prado, Madrid) by Goya; The Midnight Ride of Paul Revere (1931, Metropolitan Museum, NY) by Grant Wood; and Guernica (1937, Reina Sofia) by Pablo Picasso.