There’s nothing Romantic about Romanticism or is there? part three
Continuing from part one
The English Landscape painter John Constable (1776 – 1837) also had a hard time with regards to his art being taken seriously. He tried to gain respectability for Landscape painting, trying to get it accepted as a proper subject matter.
“I should paint my own places best – painting is but another word for feeling.” John Constable
He believed that ‘God Almighty’s sunlight’ was as full of moral and spiritual values as a scene from ancient history. He was about fifty years ahead of his time. Although rejected in England, he was much admired in France.
The Spanish painter Francisco Goya (1746 – 1848), subordinated reason for feeling. He was the first painter of the absurd. His foremost influence was Velazquez. In his painting ‘The Sabbath’ or ‘The Great Goat’, he showscross dressing men engaging in a witches sabbath. This was part of a group of paintings that came to be known as the ‘Black paintings’, paintings showing dark and horrific scenes of the degeneration of man,: a subject Goya was fascinated with.
William Blake (b. 1757 – 1827) was both a poet and an artist that strove for social and political freedom for all. He used the visionary approach. His work ranges form the religious ‘Ancient of Days’, that harks back to medieval beliefs of God as an architect, –
– to the rather grotesque ‘Ghost of a Flea’, which owes something to Goya.
Henry Fuseli (b. Germany 1741 – 1825) taught John Constable, but later ridiculed him. He infused classical structure with completely irrational thought. His painting ‘Nightmare’ contains the stuff which bad dreams are made of…and is also a precursor to Surrealism.
Here’s an annotated view of this painting, explainting the various imagery Fuseli used. here
Lots of Goya’s work and information can be found here