OzymandiasMay 7, 2008 at 1:18 pm | Posted in art, Uncategorized | 7 Comments
Tags: paris art museum exhibition romanticism goethe drawing
Le Désespoir de l’artiste devant la grandeur des ruines antiques, 1778-1880
The despair of the artist before the grandeur of ancient ruins… And honestly, what artist among us hasn’t felt like this some days?
This sketch is from the exhibit L’Âge d’or du romantisme Allemand: Aquarelles et dessins à l’époque de Goethe, currently on at the Musee de la Vie Romantique. It may not be the most fashionable style these days — the people will have their realists and impressionists — but the passion and drama of Romanticism has always had a strange attraction for me: the desolate landscapes, the fascination with overlooked periods of art and architecture, the easy familiarity with death and the supernatural… The idea is to be swept away by the visceral impact of art, instead of dispassionately admiring the skill of the artist.
While the style may sometimes veer into base sentimentality, I’m nevertheless drawn to its ideal of privileging subjective experience — as Casper David Friedrich put it, “The painter must not be content to paint what he sees before him, but also what he sees in himself.”
P.S. Since the exhibit was devoted almost entirely to pen and ink drawings and watercolors, it might be of some interest to the illustrators in my audience.
Musée de la Vie romantique
16 rue Chaptal – 75009 Paris
until June 15th
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