Theresa Gill Paintings

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Theresa Gill Paintings


“Art imitates life”

        The saying above states that arts are the key to understanding our humanity. It is the window to the soul of what we hold to be important – to the beliefs and values of our culture. Art is the products of human creativity. Basically, there are numerous types and classifications of art. Be it dancing, singing, performing on stage, designing, film, photography, computer graphics, architecture, comics and many more. But the most common form of art is painting and sculpture. Written here is a comparative essay between the famous paintings namely Ecce Ancilla Domini worked by Dante Gabriel Rossetti and The Yellow Christ worked by Paul Gaugin and the sculptural works of Francois Rude which is The Departure of the Volunteers of 1792 and the work of Auguste Rene Rodin which is the Honore Balzac.


Ecce Ancilla Domini

        The painting beside is the Ecce Ancilla Domini or The Annunciation. This painting is a work by Dante Gabriel Rossetti, the chief member of the Pre-Raphaelite Brotherhood. This painting portrays the commonly illustrated moment when the Angel Gabriel comes to the Virgin Mary to tell her the news that she will give birth to the Lord. Although Rossetti depends on earlier traditions for many of the symbols he places in the scene, his method of employing these symbols, his depiction of space, and most significantly his portrayal of the two figures represent significant departures from earlier tradition. Here you’ll see Angel Gabriel holding a stem of lilies giving them to Mary and presenting her with a quintessence of the chastity and purity she is fated to continue throughout her life. You’ll also see an embroidery hanging at the end of the bed, which Rossetti depicts her working on in The Girlhood of Mary Virgin, plays a relative role – this is a young girl’s bedroom and so one might expect her to find her needlework in this space – as well as perhaps representing her active choice to live purely since she has chosen to embroider a lily. It is also observed, that rather than dressed in blue (which was usually the color being used in painting Mary), Mary wears a simple white dress. However, Rossetti does not ignore the significance of blue as the color associated with the Virgin and heaven: he places a blue screen directly behind her, and out the window, the sky is a similar shade of blue, alluding to heaven. Rosetti also paints a wall sconce with the hint of a flame which is a different presentation of the entrance of the Holy Spirit. Rossetti includes a dove, embodying the Holy Spirit; however in this one case he does not drastically transform a traditional symbol. Rossetti’s imagined space shows great novelty. The Virgin’s bedroom is shockingly simple. Rossetti places Mary in a room that is almost claustrophobically small. The use of perspective is unconvincing: Mary’s bed appears about to slide out of the painting and the floor on the left of the painting blends into the wall, furthering the precipitous plane effect. In addition, the view out the window at back, which Rossetti could have used to give the scene depth by employing the plateau composition and allowing the viewer to see a scene in the distance, instead shows only blue sky and a part of a tree. Rather than a winged, long-haired boyish angel, he pains an androgynous Gabriel without wings, his face only visible in highly shadowed profile, with the hints of yellow flames around his feet. Another observation is the figure of Mary who sits on her bed and slumped against the wall. It also depicts Mary as an adolescent with her beautiful young features, unbrushed straight hair, childishly skinny body and the hesitance, fear and downhearted with which she responds to the angel Gabriel’s glorious pronouncement. Wisps of her messy auburn hair spread around her neck, silhouetted against her white dress, evocative of Christ’s thorns or a bloodshot eye. Rossetti has no use for the stiff, exaggerated poses of primitive Virgins. He seems most concerned with the sincere response of a young girl who has been encumbered with a burden that is both wonderful and laden with responsibility. In this endeavor, he truly succeeds. The confined nature of the room, the bleakness of the surroundings, Mary’s intense expression and her expressive pose all further the image of a young girl who is confronted with her own adult identity and is terrified.

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The Yellow Christ


        Here is another painting. It is called The Yellow Christ painted by French artist Paul Gauguin. He sought to incarcerate the primitive strength of the region through strong colors and simplified forms, as seen here in Yellow Christ. This paining is constructed of flat planes, intense colors and bold delineating outlines. The painting is in many ways the pinnacle of Gauguin’s early “synthesist” style. The plane of the canvas – the surface which must be respected – is held by the foreground figure, the strong upright of the crucifix, and the terminating horizontal bar. Against the ...

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