In 1859, while the Second Italian War of Independence was being fought, Hayez painted Il Bacio. Surely his most famous creation, the painting enjoyed a wide and earned popularity right from the beginning. The sweet and furtive kiss that the two youngsters in medieval clothes share was immediately interpreted as the goodbye of a plotter, or a war volunteer, to his lover.
This interpretation was supported by the fact that the young man’s face is almost completely hidden, that his left foot is on one of the steps- as if he were about to run away-, that his knife is pushing on the girl’s hip, and that it seems like someone is watching them (their shadow has been projected against the wall on the left).
The two lovers stand out against the plain background of squared rocks. The young girl is completely immersed in the hug. Her lithe figure seems to be cut between the man’s red tights and his brown mantle, and it is enhanced by the shimmering effects of her pale blue dress.
When Jadwiga’s father the king died, the people of Poland eventually accept her (an eleven year old girl) as their monarch. The fun part is that the law stated that a king must rule the country…. But it didn’t say the king couldn’t be female! So Jadwiga’s was crowned King of Poland in 1384. She was an extremely popular and generous monarch, but she died in childbirth when she was 25.
Hilaire-Germain-Edgar De Gas; (19 July 1834 – 27 September 1917) was a French artist famous for his paintings, sculptures, prints, and drawings. He is especially identified with the subject of dance; more than half of his works depict dancers. He is regarded as one of the founders of Impressionism, although he rejected the term, and preferred to be called a realist. He was a superb draftsman, and particularly masterly in depicting movement, as can be seen in his renditions of dancers, racecourse subjects and female nudes. (x)
art history meme • [2/7] sculptures and other media: antonio canova - paolina borghese
It is a matter of debate as to whether she actually posed naked for the sculpture, since only the head is a realistic (if slightly idealised) portrait, whilst the nude torso is a neo-classically idealised female form. When asked how she could pose for the sculptor wearing so little, she reputedly replied that there was a stove in the studio that kept her warm, though this may be apochryphal.
Canova was first instructed to depict Pauline Bonaparte fully clothed as the chaste goddess Diana, but Pauline insisted on Venus. She had a reputation for promiscuity, and may have enjoyed the controversy of posing naked. The subject of the sculpture may have also been affected by the Borghese family’s mythical ancestry: they traced their descent to Venus, through her son Aeneas, the founder of Rome.