Art History Through the 19th Century

Topics: Grande Odalisque, Jean Auguste Dominique Ingres, Édouard Manet Pages: 4 (1359 words) Published: December 10, 2010
Artists have forever been able to take us to places where we have never been or would like to go. They can make our fantasies come alive on the canvas and transport our thoughts to far off places. Real life is often harder to paint because you are bound by reality and your audience is not always willing to face it. Therefore, the artists that can paint reality but connect it in some way to our fantasies are the ones that truly understand the power of art.

Jean-Auguste-Dominique Ingres painted the Grand Odalisque in 1814 during the Romantic era of France. He uses a classical linear style and narrates morality, which is referred to as a poussiniste technique. France at the time was fascinated with the orient and other far off places and politically involved with Turkey and Africa. The erotica of this painting captured them and took them where one’s imagination could take control and forbidden things could be explored. Ingres uses a classically influenced body on the female with the volumetric, softly lit, warm skin that is revealed to the viewer. Her reclining pose is one so familiar to the art world and obviously referencing the earlier masterpieces Ingres studied during his life. He has idealized the woman’s shape by elongating her back and softening her curves. ( If you can mention elongated poses were often used because long limbs on a woman was considered ideal beauty. There is also a name for this kind of pose but I cannot think of it. Commonly found in mannerism but that was like 1520-1600, and was High Renaissance. That might help you find the term. High Renaissance features elongated, contorted poses, crowded canvases, and harsh lighting and coloring. You could use that to compare) Her face portrayed as more like those of the Renaissance, (nice you picked up on that) idealized, as well and looking straight out at the viewer. She is doing what the concubines did best, inviting us in to her private scene. With Mannerist (good) and Venetian colors, the...
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