When in Rome, Do as Infants do.

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Peter Paul Rubens. Romulus and Remus. Pinacoteca capitolina (Rome, Italy). http://library.artstor.org/asset/LESSING_ART_10310119992. Web. 6 Dec 2017.

 

Peter Paul Rubens is one of the artists discussed in Art 1010. The painting we discussed exclusively was “Elevation of the Cross” that showed the religious power during the time. As Professor Simon repeatedly says: “A change in era/time/politics equals a change in the form of art.  This work of art, similar to the “Elevation of the Cross” is also a piece of Baroque work, identified by its use of chiaroscuro (the contrast of light and dark in a painting to give a dramatic effect). The painting is given depth using a form of linear perspective where the two infants are in the center (center point) while everyone else takes to the background. The babies, both pale and pink are clean, protected by the she-wolf which tells the story of the twins, Romulus and Remus.

Then one, Romulus,
reveling in the tawny pelt of a wolf that nursed him,
will inherit the line and build the walls of Mars
and after his own name, call his people Romans.

Excerpts from Vergil’s Aeneid
Book 1

This image is literally the story of Romulus and Remus. Were twin brothers. Legend has it, they were the founders of Rome. Their mother, a Vestal Virgin, claimed she had been violated by Mars, the god of war. She was thrown into prison and the children were ordered to be drowned in the Tiber River for the sin her mother committed (breaking her vow not have sex). Rape was overlooked and women were thrown in jail for making such accusations. The twins survived. They were brought to a sacred fig tree and were protected by a she-wolf and a woodpecker that watched over them and brought them food.

The wolf is seen lying under a tree giving suck to an infant, while another plays nearby. The herdsman, Faustulus, who discovered them, is approaching. The god of the River Tiber reclines on his urn. Under the rule of Romulus the city of Rome grew in size and strength. Ruben highlights the survival of the twins being a great and wondrous gift. They are the center and bright part of the image so he wants them to be noticed.

The reason this image is the most important to me and for the homework is because it give a direct approach and visual to what the twins looked like when they were found by the huntsman in the woods. Romulus is reaching to the sky as if he knows that he is the kin of Mars- the Roman god of war. This supports how Rome got it’s name although it is a mere myth.

Cameron Team Jupiter

Ugolino and his sons

IMG-7515This powerful sculpture was found during my trip to the Met. The subject is a man trapped in a tower with his family being forced to either starve or resort to cannibalism. The sculpture was created in 1865. It contains deep grooves, making the emotion visible on everyone’s faces. This sculpture reminded me of the Ecstasy of Saint Teresa. Both sculptures are dramatic and have amplified emotions. Saint Teresa has an expression of painful joy, and Ugolino is visibly distraught. He is biting his hand and he is surrounded by his sons. One of his sons is dead and the others appear to be pleading with their father. Their sculptures are also very expressive however not to the extent of Ugolino. The sculptor also included some protruding bones and veins in the sculpture. This is a very naturalistic portrait, both in body movement and emotions.

THE GREAT WAVE THAT SWALLOWED

 

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I moved to Long Island from Trinidad, and it was a good transition to move from the Caribbean to another island in New York because I could still enjoy some of the same things that I enjoyed in Trinidad, like going to the beach. One of my favorite beaches in Long Island is Smith Point Beach in Mastic. I loved that the waves were often rough and I loved playing in the sand because when I closed my eyes and just laid back in the sun, I could imagine that I was still on the beach in Trinidad.

 

Smith Point is a very unique beach and you need to walk down a long passage to get to the beach. On that passage, you will walk past a memorial. It took me two years to realize that it was a memorial because the first thing that I would notice was an image of a wave on the front and just some country flags. I was heading to the beach! I didn’t really think to stop and observe what the image and the flags meant.

One day, I finally walked into the memorial and I was heart-broken. The flags that were flying, represented the deaths of people that died in a plane crash right off the coast of Smith Point. On the front of a big, black carving of stone was an image of The Great Wave Off Kanagawa by Katsushika Hokusai. The wave is placed on the front of the memorial to symbolize the plane crashing into the ocean and being swallowed by the waves. Had you been at Smith Point standing at the spot of the memorial on July 19th, 1996 at 8:31 pm, you would have seen the plane crash and burn directly in front of you. All 230 passengers on board died.

Their names are on the back of the stone with the Great Wave, appearing to be part of the ocean and permanently part of the Great Wave. The Great Wave is tweaked a bit to fit the memorial, like Mount Fuji is no longer part of the piece. It’s peaceful, I like the idea of them being a part of the ocean, it’s haunting and comforting at the same time. The big block was supposed to look like shards of the airplane that crashed. Whatever belongings were found were put under the wave in the memorial.  It gives a completely new meaning to the Great Wave for me, it gives it a different purpose. The wave is almost eery without it’s blue color, replaced by black on the memorial. It is a good sentiment and definitely a life-changing memorial.

-Mckensi Pascall, Team Aphrodite

Wall (Unoriginal) Street

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As we saw on our joint class trip to Manhattan there seems to have been a great need to turn New York into a new Greece or a new Rome. They hoped that this would live on in there stead and transform the impressions that people pre received notions when looking upon such recognized architectural styles.

Of course the structure copies the most common parts of Greek and Roman architecture only to use them as adornments instead of structural with the the large Corinthian columns and the eye catching  pediment with the central figure of Integrity.

The people who helped establish New York as a great economical hub wanted to show themselves as the inheritors of Greek wisdom in order to cultivate an image of supremacy over all that would do business under their supervision. However just because you copy a civilizations iconic works in a modern semi modern fashion does not actually give you the same knowledge and experience which the creature and owners of such structures have lacked.

-Bedirhan Gonul, Team 3/ Aphrodite

 

Halloween Chiaroscuro

While scrolling down some of my friends Instagram feeds, I stumbled upon my friend Cristian’s Halloween post dressed up as Johnny Depp from “Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas”. Clearly shown here there is a case of chiaroscuro discussed in our class. I was there when Cristian took this photo, and I remember specifically him wanting the idea of madness, insanity, and confusion to come through with the photo, so making this chiaroscuro effect helped him achieve that. We can see how this contemporary piece is using photography instead of painting to achieve a certain lighting effect. Old Baroque artists like Carvaggio used this chiaroscuro technique for dramatic effect, while Cristian used it for a more insane look to the art, to emphasize his character.

“Hallucinations are bad enough. But after awhile you learn to cope with things like seeing your dead grandmother crawling up your leg with a knife in her teeth.”

Sean Reilly, Team Artemis

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Baroque style plates at home.

Upon visiting the museum this week, I’ve ran into several Baroque decorations, and some with just Baroque elements. Then I saw this very interesting piece- Barber’s Bowl with Baroque decorations. After seeing that, I thought that I have whole bunch of such pieces. Growing up in Asian country I’ve had many plates that look like this

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I believe that design of these plates closely resembles those with the Baroque element plates and bowls I’ve found in the museum. Here’s one that I liked

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Both of these have those curved lines along the edges, as well as bright and vivid colors. The ones I had weren’t as rich and explicit, they were very common. However, if anyone ever wanted an expensive plate they could find something just as decorative as the one from the museum.

-Diana, Team Mercury

Another Unit, Another Synagogue

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This synagogue can be found along Ocean Avenue, between Avenues K and L. It caught my eye because it really encapsulates a lot of formal elements we’ve covered in class. You can see the arcade of arches at the top of the stairs, with emphasized keystones, as well as arched windows framed by column/pilaster motifs with Corinthian capitals. The center of the building has a row of large Corinthian columns beneath a frieze that goes across the entire façade. Above that on either side are structures that appear similar to miniature temples, with a row of Tuscan columns supporting another arcade. On the roof, visible from the ground when standing across the street like I was, is a pair of giant green domes.

Certain details also reminded me of particular examples of Baroque architecture. For example, the Tuscan colonnade at the top was reminiscent of the piazza of St. Peter’s, although admittedly a lot smaller.

It’s not necessarily clear what the building here is made of, but it could be marble, like the works of old. The motifs mentioned could have been chosen in order to embellish the face of the building with architectural forms that are established as distinguished. Everything about this picture shows the grandeur of the place. The picture is not perfect because there was a car in front of me when I took the picture, so the base level is a little cut off, but you can see a set of doors next to the tree that give you a sense of the scale of this building. That’s what seems Baroque about this architecture: the size and flair. It’s elaborate and decorative, and very BIG – all very Baroque traits. The Baroque period is marked by drama, and this synagogue certainly has that. The building has a presence that demands attention; it’s impossible to walk past it without giving it a second look.

-Chaya, team Venus

 

Bernini in Brooklyn

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St. Francis of Assisi- St. Blaise Parish 

319 Maple Street Brooklyn, NY 11225

I used this image because it reminded me of Bernini’s Baldacchino in St Peter’s basilica. It is a very dramatic center piece over the the alter which draws attention to the front of the church. It is colorfully ornamented with gold and very baroque in it’s style. The columns have corinthian capitals and are extravagantly large. The stained glass behind the alter brings in colorful light that illuminates the alter and the painting behind the alter.

Luisa Reynoso, Team 17

The False Mirror

IMG_5413 When visiting the MoMa, I came across this painting. René Magritte’s painting of the The False Mirror presents an “enormous lashless eye with a luminous cloud-swept blue sky filling the iris and an opaque, dead-black disk for a pupil.” This surrealist painting insinuates limits to the authority of optical vision: a mirror provides a mechanical reflection, but the eye is selective and subjective. Although this painting came out in a much later era, there is evidence of continuous influence each movement and period has had on the following generation. Surrealism is the extension of one’s own imagination and the artist’s intent on the painting is not necessarily made clear. This painting is similar to Diego Velazquez’s Las Meninas in the sense that both paintings create their own audience just from the need to inspect and contemplate the artistic purpose.

Baroque inspired pillows !

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In unit 4  we discussed  the Baroque Era, that was approximately from c.1585- c.1700/1730.  The term baroque has Spanish origins and  means irregularly-shaped pearl and was also used to describe the art at that time, that appeared to be initially “absurd” and “bizarre” by critics. Its meaning is where I drew my inspiration for my blog post on baroque art. While at home contemplating on what to write about  I quickly glimpsed the strange design of the throw pillows on my couch.  The pillow was colored dark brown, with hints of dark maroon in its swirls. The designs reminded me of a flower, in a dark gloomy way. The swirls were also accompanied by elongated shaped pearls. The elaborate designs draws the viewer in and excites the imagination. This pillow can be slightly compared to Bernini’s , Ecstasy of St. Theresa.  He uses his talents to make the sculpture appear as though its floating in air. We can also see the heaviness in St. Teresa’s apparel through the use of texture. The sculpture and the pillow both portray the different aspects of Baroque art. They also seem to borrow certain techniques and designs from different periods. Byzantine influence can be seen through the designs on the pillow, while a Hellenistic influence  can be inferred through the dramatic approach taken.

Sharifa Thompson

Hands move quicker than the eye can see

Suetonis Life of Augustus

“Gallius was tortured as if he were a slave; and though he confessed to nothing, Augustus himself tore out his eyes and sentenced him to death.” (Suetonis 27)

“According to some historians, he chose 300 prisoners of equestrian or senatorial rank, and offered them on the ides of March at the altar of the God Julius, as human sacrifices. (Suetonis, 15)”

The first quote is addressed in the 27 paragraph where it is explained by Augustus was hated during his reign. This quote is an example of Augustus being irrational, using just what he thought he saw (a sword) and killing a possibly innocent man. Augustus acted rashly. The reason I associate the term Iris with this quote is because although Augustus could have been mistaken with the object he thought he saw on Gallius, he went so far to tear his eyes as if removing doubt to what he saw. It is a guilty complex to assume someone is a threat and instead of being incorrect, Augustus uses the idea “If you don’t see it, it never happened”. He was trying to mask his mistake  but removing the eyes of his victim.

The second quote refers to Augustus again being hot headed. In the passage, Augustus seek revenge with sentencing death to crowds of prisoner. The event happens to be on the Ides of March, the day Julius Caesar was given his fate. The ides of march, best known as the foretold date, reminded me of eyes that could see into the future. Ides, translated to the day falling to the middle of the month, made me think of eyes (play on words) . The iris of a person’s eyes is near the front of the eye, between the cornea and the pupil- the middle of the person’s eyes. It control the amount of light a person processes. The eyes move quickly and rapidly change the amount of light it processes to the brain. Just like the Iris, Augustus is rash and impulsive to act.

 

Latin may be a dead language, but several words derive from it, including the word iris. During Caesar’s error it would not be uncommon to hear someone say iris and not refer to the color of one’s eyes. Iris was the goddess of the rainbow and the messenger of the Olympian gods, specifically the God named Hera.

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In your own words

This is an image of me. I took it to show my Iris and how my eyes of dilated because of the flash. Although the name Iris, comes from a God, it comes from a God Augustus most likely knew of and worshiped during his life.

The quotes to not directly connect with Iris since it is the name of a God but I found it interesting how rash and impetuous Augustus was, especially about killing people. It reminded me of how my father teases me that my eyes are bigger than my mouth or when I go through episodes of rapid thought and continuously look for everything to do and never being able to slow down and concentrate.

This image relates to Art 1010 because I took this image in my living room next to the blue lamp my father loves. This lamp has a similar shape that of a Pelike which is a one-piece ceramic container similar to an amphora. It has two open handles, a narrow neck, a flanged mouth, and a sagging, almost spherical belly. I thought it was interesting since I considered everything in my home very modern. Having a lamp resemble something from ancient Greece would be fun to say in a conversation. 

Cameron, Cannon TEAM JUPITER

 

 

Night at the Tenebrism

This is an image of  a painting I saw walking by swiftly in a museum. Amazing I took it by accident. I was attempting to take a picture of my Iris for a different blog post and (one of my eyes is very weak, so went black for a second) switched the camera to outer-mode. However, when I was scrolling through my phone I realized that the image had a great use of lighting to show the birth of the figure being depicted.

The name of the painting is quite long; The Adoration of the Shepherds with Saint Catherine of Alexandria by the Italian artist, Castello di Cigoli. He was a Renaissance artist, which is evident in the style of this painting. It is oil on canvas is a dramatic use of lighting to emphasis the “gift” of Jesus and the miracle his birth was, to the virgin Mary.

The reason I thought this related to our art class was how Cigoli used tenebrism. It is also the detail of the clothing that amazes me because I can get an idea of the texture of the fabric placed over Jesus and the clothing of the spectators.

Julius and Teresa

This is a statue of Julius Caesar. Caesar was born on July 13th, 100BC and ruled the Roman empire from 46BC until his death in 44BC. During his reign, he declared himself emperor for life and had many affairs with many women.

This is a sculpture of the Ecstacy of Saint Teresa. This sculpture was made during the Protestant Reformation and served the purpose of re-defining the church. Saint Teresa is seen being held by an angel as the angel is holding a golden spear.

 

Both the statue of Julius Caesar and the Ecstacy of Saint Teresa share similarities. Both were made to idolize and honor a figure and a belief. Both images are not attached to the stone and show movement in their bodies.

Both the statue of Julius Caesar and the Ecstacy of Saint Teresa share differences. Julius Caesar is made of bronze whereas Saint Teresa is made of marble and fresco.  Julius Caesar is seen standing on the stone whereas Saint Teresa is seen floating over it. Julius was made to honor Roman politics whereas Saint Teresa was made to honor Roman religion.

The statue can be tied in to what we are learning in Classics. The statue portrays Julius Caesar as an elegant, royal, and powerful individual. This idea of Julius was discussed in our Classics class. The statue positions Caesar on a higher level than his viewers and is seen looking down at people rather than looking straight. Though this may have been unintentional, it definitely relates to the Julius Caesar discussed in Classics. In Classics, Julius was perceived as a dictator that often looked down on his people.

 

Frank, Team Artemis

Was Caravaggio’s “Doubting Thomas” An Atheist?

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Caravaggio’s “Doubting Thomas” ARTD UNIT4

John 20:24-29 tells the story of Doubting Thomas, one of the biblical disciples of Jesus Christ that alone refused to believe that the resurrected Jesus had appeared to the ten other apostles. Thomas, in the book of John is described as a skeptic who refuses to believe without direct personal experience. Caravaggio’s depiction of “Doubting Thomas” gives a visual aid to the story and the two don’t differ. They tell the same story through different ways of art: visual and textual. Combined this biblical depiction of Thomas both visually and in text closely relate to the well-known characteristics of a modern day atheist. So this begs the question: Was Doubting Thomas an atheist?

Similarities

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According to the Oxford Dictionary the word atheist is best described as “a person who does not believe in the existence of a god or any gods: one who subscribes to or advocates atheism” and the definition of a Doubting Thomas are almost one in the same in it being defined as a person who is skeptical and refuses to believe something without proof.

Proof has always been a starting baseline in the argument of atheist and similarly it is an argument in the book of John concerning Doubting Thomas. Both definitions of these words are similar in that they both share a lack of belief in something as a cause of insufficient or non-existing evidence. The way that the textual and visual evidence from biblical references and Caravaggio’s artwork relate to that of an atheist are in the lack of belief sans evidence: Caravaggio’s painting shows Jesus and Thomas during their encounter after Christ’s crucifixion and resurrection. You can see Thomas with his fingers between Christ’s wounded abdomen. This is a crucial moment in history, because only then did Thomas believe.

It is made evident through the bible that in the moments leading to this event depicted by Caravaggio or told in the bible, Thomas stated “Unless I see the nail marks in his hands and put my finger where the nails were, and put my hand into his side, I will not believe.” Similarly as an atheist, the principal reason you do not believe in God is the lack of physical evidence. The observed facts simply do not support the existence of such a being. Whether it was that Thomas was a past figure of an atheist or that Doubting Thomas is a figurative representation of atheism (non-believers) the facts are irrefutable.

Differences

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The differences the symbolism/representation Caravaggio’s “Doubting Thomas” and atheism differ in are vast dependent on your perspective of the issue. The word doubt according to the Oxford Dictionary means, “to waver, hesitate, be uncertain.” Doubt is not rejection of belief, but holding a belief with hesitation and uncertainty. Doubt involves believing something with questions about whether it is really true or not. Atheism however differs in that it’s a disbelief or lack of belied in the existence of God or gods.                                                                                                 Oxford Dictionary

A difference in these two works and why people may say Doubting Thomas doesn’t or wasn’t the representation of an atheist is through all the other biblical narrations of the twin disciple. They are many biblical claims that support the fact that Thomas may have even been the boldest disciple of the twelve! John 11:16 speaks of a moment in which Jesus announced to his disciples that he was going to Judea, to which all but Thomas advised him not to. In the scripture, Thomas boldly proclaimed: “Let us also go, that we may die with him” This scripture shows an opposite contrast in the character of Thomas. It shows him as a believer. Thomas was the first evangelized India and to have died there as a martyr.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The Opheus

The picture I chose is a picture from MET museum. This was made in 1556-1619, the author is Cristoforo Stati. All the information was in the picture above. I believe this is an example of baroque sculpture not only because of the date, also because the emotion of the sculpture is kind of enjoying, and there are many details were presented in the sculpture. The modern thing that can compare with would be the lightbulb above, I believe lightbulb was invented far after the sculpture was made. Also, I think it is somehow related to classic because the sculpture was playing violent, and in the classic, I learned lyre was the oldest instrument in the western world. This is somehow connected since the sculpture has a corolla above his head, and it should represent god. But the fact is that the sculpture is using violent instead of the lyre. So I believe it can be somehow related to classic class materials.

The Death of Socrates

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The above picture is one that I took while going to the Metropolitan museum. The picture is of The Death Of Socrates. In my opinion, I would say that this painting to an extent has Chiaroscuro. This is because similarly to Caravaggio’s  Calling of St. Matthew it utilizes light to highlight a certain person or quality. For example, in Calling of St. Matthew the light in the picture highlights Mathew pointing at himself. Similar to this, in The Death Of Socrates the light highlights Socrates and puts emphasis to what he is about to do, which is drink poison. However a difference between the paintings would be that while Caravaggio’s Calling of St. Matthew is used to signify a spiritual awakening which evokes strong feeling from the viewer; in The Death Of Socrates this scene with Socrates signifies his bravery and loyalty to science.

~ Ashley, Team Juno

Unit 4: Baroque Art

The Hippopotamus Hunt, oil on canvas by Peter Paul Rubens, c. 1615–16; in the Alte Pinakothek, Munich.
This work titled “The Hippopotamus Hunt”, by Peter Paul Rubens in 1615, Munich, Germany. It can be described as a prime example of Baroque art, due to the drama and tension, and also it being created during the 16th century. In this scene, a group of men who are on horses, appear to be in the midst of battle with a crocodile, and a hippopotamus.There are strong diagonal lines, which catch the audience’s attention from one part of the scene to the next. Also, it seems to appear as though there is strong emotions connecting from the people, horses, and animals, through there being a sense of danger, and tension. It gives an uncertainty of the outcome of this battle, between the men, and the animals. There is also a representation of an inner conflict between man and beast. Also, hunting during this time period was illegal, so this painting could be considered a status symbol, as only the wealthy could hunt legally. This work could also bring about shock due to its graphic images, and it being violent, and the killing of animals. This work is essentially a Baroque piece, due to it’s ability to appeal to the senses in a dramatic way, and also keep the viewer’s attention at hand, with the rich and deep color. It can also be compared to contemporary works of today, as those were influenced by past Baroque works in terms of structure, and emotion.

Marisa, -Team Ares

Baroque Style in the Death of Julius Caesar?!

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The image above is the painting of The Death of Julius Caesar by Vincenzo Camuccini.

In Classics class, we learned about the death, or rather, the assassination, of Julius Caesar. The image above that I had searched up for while reading an article on the death of Julius Caesar depicts the moment he was being stabbed by the Roman senators.

In art, we have been learning about Baroque art. Baroque art, although it was mostly in religious paintings, also carries the style of dramatic scenes, rich and deep color, as well as a great contrast between light and dark. It also contains great degrees of movement and emotions. The image above was painted in 1798, a couple of decades after the Baroque movement. But this painting shows elements of Baroque style. If you look closely, you can see the movement of the figures. On the right there are figure shown to have their hands raised whereas the ones on the left are engrossed in the assassination of Caesar. There is also a contrast between the light and dark as shown in the background and foreground.

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This is a drawing that Camuccini had drawn of the assassination of Julius Caesar. I had gone to the Metropolitan Museum but was unable to take a picture. But this drawing/sketch is included in the museum.


Aisha, Team Ares