Sunday, January 29, 2012

Words of Wisdom: Jules Bastien-Lepage

Joan of Arc (detail)

"I assert,"  said Bastien-Lepage, "that when one paints the past, it should at any rate be made to look like something human, and correspond with what one actually sees around one ...  and if one had a fancy to represent the Prodigal Son or Priam at the feet of Achilles ...  one would paint them in the surroundings of the country with the models that one has at hand, just as if the old drama had taken place yesterday evening.  It is only in that way that art can be living and beautiful."

Joan of Arc 1879
oil on canvas
100 X 110 in.


rahina q.h. said...

it is wonderful to read the thinking or principles behind such wonderful works of art.

I was wondering if it would be possible to also mention the galleries that the paintings you review are found in? I think this painting is in the MET (I was fortunate to see it) . if possible, thank you :)

innisart said...

@Rahina Yes, this painting is part of the Met's collection.

k said...

Just wanted to thank you. I love seeing this type of paintings

Munsell Color said...

Matthew, your choice of painting to represent the words of becomes so much more visceral, as we try to imagine a modern-day Joan of Arc. Definitely sets the mind to a lengthy and inspiring day-dream.

Lisa Graham Art said...

I could just gaze at this all day. How dreamy. My husband and I visited the Met last June. We were there nine hours and I think we only saw about 1/3 of it at lightening speed. You could easily spend your whole summer vacation just visiting the museum.

Great post and what a special piece. Thanks!

Art by Andrew Daniel said...

I have been a fan of your blog for a long time now. The quality of artwork has made me always enthusiastic to check back. Thank you for all of your efforts!

When I was working on my latest blog post, I was trying to remember the name of the painter who made this piece. I knew I had seen it at the Met several years back, then a couple days later it shows up your blog!

This painting holds an ideal place in my mind of combining portraiture with landscape. One of my favorite paintings of all time. Thanks for making it possible for me to see it again!