A scene from the Trojan War: as two hoplites clash, Paris (left), in Trojan dress, flees the battlefield. Detail of an Attic black-figure amphora, attributed to the Hattatt Painter; ca. 540-520 BCE. Now in the Museum of Fine Arts, Houston.
is a prominent contemporary Chinese oil painter with a broad range of
influences from impressionism and Pre-Raphaelitism to Andrew Wyeth, in a
style moving from realism to a more free-form and poetic manner. In my
opinion, one of the most ‘complete’ figurative painters from China.
He’s House with Attic series is a set of 44 paintings to accompany
Anton Chekhov’s short story usually titled An Artist’s Story or The House with the Mezzanine
in English. The choice of an impressionistic style to the works is presumably a deliberate evocation of Chekhov’s period, and He explores the space and psychology between the characters with a striking ease.
Alcaeus and Sappho, the two great lyric poets of Lesbos, holding lyres. Side A of an Attic red-figure kalathos, attr. to the Brygos Painter; ca. 470 BCE. Found at Akragas, Sicily; now in the Staatliche Antikensammlungen, Munich.
…In my opinion my hands have grown too delicate; but what can I do? I shall go out again, even if it cost me a good deal; for my chief concern is that I should not neglect my work any longer. Art is jealous; she will not allow illness to take precedence of her. And I give in to her.
…Men like myself really have no right to be ill. But you must understand what my attitude is to Art. In order to attain to real Art one must work both hard and long. The thing I have set my mind upon as the goal of all my efforts is devilish difficult, and yet I do not think that I am aiming too high. I will make drawings that will amaze some people.
Vincent van Gogh, from a letter to Théo (trans. Anthony M. Ludovici),
The Letters of a Post-Impressionist.
The Minotaur. The surrounding inscription reads ὁ παῖς καλός (”The boy is handsome/beautiful”). Tondo of an Attic black-figure kylix, attributed to the Painter of London E4; ca. 515 BCE. Now in the National Archaeological Museum of Spain, Madrid. Photo credit: Marie-Lan Nguyen/Wikimedia Commons.
The newborn goddess Athena springs, fully armed, from the head of Zeus, as the other Olympian gods look on. Attic black-figure exaleiptron, attr. to the C Painter; ca. 570-560 BCE. Found at Thebes; now in the Louvre.
Boreas, the North Wind, abducts the mountain nymph Oreithyia. Attic red-figure pelike in the Severe Style, attr. to the Painter of the Birth of Athena; ca. 460 BCE. Now in the
Museum für Kunst und Gewerbe, Hamburg, Germany.