Gothic Artworks

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Gothic Artworks

1IanFryer
març 9, 2016, 5:07pm

I'm interested in how art helped to create a pre-cinematic visual language of Gothic and wanted to throw in a few suggestions to see what other members suggest in turn.

My (probably obvious) suggestions are:
Henri Fuseli's The Nightmare
Goya's The Sleep of Reason Produces Monsters
Philippe Jacques de Loutherbourg's A Philosopher in a Moonlit Churchyard

2LolaWalser
març 9, 2016, 5:22pm

Hmm, I think what we want is "Gothic" filtered through Romantic and Symbolist sensibilites here...

Caspar David Friedrich:

3LolaWalser
març 9, 2016, 5:23pm

Arnold Böcklin:

4LolaWalser
març 9, 2016, 5:27pm

Odilon Redon:

5LolaWalser
març 9, 2016, 5:28pm

Illustrations just as an example, I suggest googling for images on those names.

You may want to check out the visual arts threads in The Chapel Of Abyss too.

6IanFryer
març 9, 2016, 5:30pm

Thanks everyone! How do you post images on here, BTW?

7LolaWalser
març 9, 2016, 5:35pm

>6 IanFryer:

The following, but with angle brackets instead of curved:

(img src="somepictureaddress.jpg")

Mind that you resize as necessary--huge pictures can distort thread page outline and are a pain to load--easiest way to resize is to add a width or height pixel sum, for example:

(img src="somepictureaddress.jpg" width=300)

"300" is just a suggestion, play with numbers to see what fits your need best.

8housefulofpaper
març 9, 2016, 5:49pm

How about the technique of mezzotint? It was especially good at rendering landscapes in moonlight.

9alaudacorax
Editat: març 10, 2016, 7:37am

The history of the 'folly' would be closely tied-in with this subject, too.

10alaudacorax
març 10, 2016, 8:04am

Bit of a tangent, here, on >2 LolaWalser::

That Caspar David Friedrich is used for the cover art on The Cambridge Companion to Gothic Fiction, but chopped up in such a way as to - I've only just realised - rob the work of its force. Looking at the whole - with the gravestones in foreground giving the sense of scale Freidrich must have intended - the picture accords much more with ideas of 'the sublime', as in Edmund Burke, so important to lit. theory of the Gothic.

I've probably got more familiar with the cover of that book than any other book I own and now I've suddenly, because of this thread, come to think of it as a bit of a cock-up. I'll never be able to look at it the same way again.

I'd love to see the original - it's impressive enough full-screen on my desktop PC.

11alaudacorax
març 10, 2016, 10:25am

I suppose pre-cinema stage scenery must come into the equation somewhere (I'm back on the OP, now).

12alaudacorax
març 11, 2016, 5:56am

This topic is surprisingly difficult to research online.

How familiar would authors and readers involved with English-language Gothic have been with the paintings we might look at, especially continental ones? I don't know, so it seemed a better starting point to go back to the literature itself and look at the illustrations of the earlier editions of the various high points of the genre. For the popular sellers we'd know these were seen by large numbers.

Right, so I got so far ... and stuck. To my surprise, I haven't come across a website, blog or book that treats the subject. Hunting up the illustrations for individual books is much harder than I'd expected, too (or, at least, much more time-consuming).

Anybody have any tips?

13alaudacorax
març 11, 2016, 6:04am

I did find a sample from an academic work - stupidly, I forgot to make a note and now I can't remember what it was - that suggested that paintings inspired by Gothic literature of the 18th & 19C just wouldn't have made it to the exhibitions of the day - the genre was just too low-status. So, if there was a feedback-loop between Gothic literature and a genre of Gothic painting, it wasn't going to be very visible.

14alaudacorax
març 11, 2016, 6:07am

I didn't have much success hunting for stage scenery, either ...

15alaudacorax
març 11, 2016, 6:10am

Having made all those posts, it's probably a bit superfluous to say that >1 IanFryer: raises an absoluting fascinating topic, but I'll say it anyway.

It's probably another one that'll cost me money in the long run, but we'll ignore that ...

16LolaWalser
març 11, 2016, 11:03am

I think "Gothic" might be misleading in the searches, because it has a different meaning in art than it does in literature. Rather, look for things like this: Dark Romanticism : From Goya to Max Ernst, Gothic Nightmares: Fuseli, Blake and the Romantic Imagination etc.

17alaudacorax
Editat: març 11, 2016, 11:48am

>16 LolaWalser:

Yes, it's a tricky word. It doesn't help that there are all sorts of modern illustrators and artists - often of the modern, 'Goth' persuasion - doing Gothic stuff in our sense of the word.

Your links bring me back to my suggestion in >15 alaudacorax: that this thread will probably cost me money in the long run ... must renew my library ticket.

ETA - OUCH!!! Just looked up current prices on those two books ...

18alaudacorax
març 17, 2016, 6:14am

Bump - I hope this thread isn't going to languish. I find it a fascinating topic, but I really don't know how to get at it - how to start.

19housefulofpaper
març 17, 2016, 6:22pm

The British Library Terror and Imagination exhibition had some artworks among the exhibits.

From what I can remember there were big oil paintings that represented scenes from Shakespeare. There were similar paintings that illustrated scenes from novels by Anne Radcliffe. There were also smaller paintings illustrating scenes from (I think) The Castle of Otranto, painted on a translucent material and designed to be illuminated from behind.

20veilofisis
nov. 23, 2016, 11:46am



John Martin, baby.

21veilofisis
nov. 23, 2016, 11:48am

I probably should've found a way to scale that down BUT METHINKS THAT WOULD MISS THE POINT, somehow...

(Also, just remembered that this is actually the cover image for Penguin's The Call of Cthulhu and Other Weird Stories. Apropos.)

22pgmcc
nov. 23, 2016, 12:04pm

>21 veilofisis: I think it is just perfect the way it is.

23LolaWalser
nov. 23, 2016, 12:10pm

Appropriate. I think I recognise the SE corner of 91st and 2nd.

24LolaWalser
oct. 13, 2020, 2:13pm

Highly recommended for Švankmajer fans (who couldn't make it to the actual exhibition...) I think I've seen just about everything of his films that is publicly available, but not these artworks, the drawings, sculptures, designs etc. The juxtaposition with the films, the multiple screens and views and angles, creates an amazing layered experience:

Jan Svankmajer - The Alchemical Wedding (exhibition)

25alaudacorax
oct. 16, 2020, 4:56pm

,24
Weirdly fascinating ... oddly familiar ...

26housefulofpaper
oct. 17, 2020, 7:43pm

>25 alaudacorax:

You might have seen some Švankmajer on BBC2 or C4 in the 80s or early 90s.