Mystery of the Virgin

The image of Virgin and Child created by Jean Fouquet is rather unusual one. The first thing that catches the eye is the exposed, snow-white Madonna’s breast, so perfectly round that it is almost unreal. In contrast to other images of this type – Madonna lactans, that means the nursing one – Child seems to…

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Icarus

Today, not much from me. I wanted to share the words of a poet, who described his perceiving of the paintings of the old masters. Close to mine. As an illustration, I am showing the Landscape with the Fall of Icarus, currently considered a repetition of Pieter Bruegel’s composition. Which means that however there is…

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Strange garden

Whatever you would like to write about Józef Mehoffer’s “Strange Garden”, everything ends with a question about a huge dragonfly filling the upper part of the composition. It is disturbing not only because of the large size, but also the reason why it was painted. What is it actually? Let’s start from the beginning. The…

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The triumph of death

Looking at the “The Triumph of Death” by Pieter Bruegel the Elder, I wonder what exactly is this picture about.  The triumph of death as a subject functioned in art from the fourteenth century and was most often presented in the form of a triumphal procession, in which death proved its invincible power. In its…

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Calumny

Until recently that painting by Sandro Botticelli has been for me a puzzle difficult to solve. The title, “Calumny of Apelles”, clearly indicates the allegorical meaning of the composition. Where, however, is the personification of the title Calumny? Until now, it seemed to me that she was the woman dressed in black. Ugly, old, looking…

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Pentecost

Giotto di Bondone is considered to be a reformer of art, the one who once again has introduced in painting the idea of ​​imitating nature. He was active at the very beginning of the thirteenth century, in the Middle Ages. However, his works are composed according to the rules that will develop in the Renaissance…

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Summer

When summer arrives, the scent of warm grass rises in the air and lushy green leaves sway in the wind, I like to look at Friedrich’s paintings. They offer me what I am looking for in contact with nature. Silence, rest and unhurried contemplation of the world. Everything that the city refuses me on hot…

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Maximilian

For a long time I did not know what to think about this painting. I was annoyed by its pompousness, disturbed logic of shots from barrels placed near the hearts of convicts and their vaguely depicted faces. At the same time I liked the way of presenting the platoon: the uniforms, the rhythm of the…

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Tympanum at Vézelay

Today, I will tell you about the sculptural decoration of the tympanum at Vézelay. But first a few words of introduction. The functioning of the Romanesque sculpture was closely related to architecture. It decorated portals, jambs, archivolts, lintels and sometimes spilled over the entire facade. Inside the building, it focused on columns, accumulated on capitals,…

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Ecce Homo

Easter is coming. This is the “Ecce Homo” by Maarten van Heemskerck, a triptych ordered by the family Drenckwaert from Dortrecht in 1644. It was to serve them as a commemoration of their piety, as well as a means of obtaining salvation. The husband and wife, placed on both sides of the main panel, pray…

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