The Shoes


When I visited the museum I was very eager to look at the works of famous artists such as Vincent van Gogh, and of course many others. An idol that I greatly admire once mentioned he really liked Vincent van Gogh’s painting, so I, as any other fan would get curious as of what in those paintings made my idol interested. It took me a while to find this gallery with various  Vincent van Gogh paintings, and in my final project I’ve used a couple too. This time I want to talk about the still life that was painted in the 1888’s. As we all know it, still life was considered one of the lowest ranked arts which was practiced mainly by the newbies. However, Vincent van Gogh and Paul Cezanne, proved otherwise. Paul Cezanne painted a couple of still lifes that were very different from anyone else, his were painting with the use of perspective.  As he himself explained, when artists paint, they don’t stay in one position- they constantly move. Hence, the point of view always changes and he thought he should stay consistent with that- and he did. In his painting “The Basket of Apples” you may notice many things that seem off. Such as the cookies. In one stack of cookies he showed us two different points of view, cookies closer to the plate are shown as if we are looking at them from below or just straight at them from maybe a sitting position, where as the top cookies are shown from the above point of view. I find this very interesting and his reasoning behind it very interesting too. Van Gogh on the other hand, painted the shoes from a singular prespective and to many this painting may not be as appealing. What I find interesting about it however, is the fact that he gave us background. He painted the tiles and we can even identify the place and the house the shoes are in! Additionally, if we knew Vincent personally, we might have been able to identify to owner of the shoes as well. This painting does not only relate to the way Cezanne shone light upon still lifes and how beautiful they could be, but also in a way that it can be related to an ordinary person. Usually, painters and artists of other kind, would have painted mythical creatures such as gods, sirens and such. However, with the modernization and Renaissance artists are now incorporating more of a daily life. We’ve seen a nude painting of a prostitute, a painting of an artist in his work room, and now a painting of someone’s shoes. These weren’t normal and those who painted such painting were considered as low class artists. I was always wondering why do some artists become famous, and yet some talents are underappreciated, I think I know now. Mainly, I believe it is due to the fact that those who are able to make it to the top are very innovative. The are able to express themselves in a ways that have never been seen before. They can make everything simple to our eyes seem very artistic and meaningful. Its hard to explain, but I think if you can do something that no one esle did before and explain why that piece should be considered art, you will succeed. Thankfully, things changed and artists now are able to express themselves in various ways, be it through painting gods, shoes, or music.

Diana, Team Mercury

Formal characteristics in a wide range of art

IMG_0331.JPGFollowing our first lesson on the formal characteristics of art and its presence in Francisco Goya’s ‘Third of May’, I starting thinking of pieces of artwork that emulate these elements making the piece a huge success in the eyes of future artists. The first piece that came to mind was Van Gogh’s ‘Starry Night’. Van Gogh uses rich colors in his piece to evoke emotion among his audience. van Gogh´s choice of dark blues and greens were complemented with touches of mint green showing the reflection of the moon. The buildings in the centre of the painting are small blocks of yellows, oranges, and greens with a dash of red to the left of the church. The dominance of blue in Starry Night is balanced by the orange of the night sky elements. A dark melancholy and turbulent mood is created through his use of various shades of dark hues. These use of colors and the inclusion of a lone moon, tree, and church tower creates a mood of loneliness and defiance. Using formal analysis, we are often able to decode the authors message, making its an important tool for art historians and students.