Friday, November 11, 2016

The Seduction of Yusuf- Description




















    The painting, Seduction of Yusuf, was done by Persian painter Bihzad. The lines in this painting are subtle but straight. This painting has a contrasting tone, all of the rooms have different colors and patterns within them. The texture seems to be smooth as if was painted on a canvas or some sort of paper. One thing that stuck out to me the most was the shape of the picture; it is very geometric. Throughout the picture there are squares, triangles, and rectangles that basically build the whole painting.


   I would describe the movement of this art piece to be flowing because when you look at it your eyes are automatically drawn to look through the rooms as if the people were moving through them. The colors of this painting are quite vibrant, multiple color combinations are used. It does seem to be a little worn making the colors slightly faded.  My favorite part about this painting is the visual variety it contains. Each rooms have their own detail, some with beautiful patterns and others with elegant calligraphy. Every room is like its own individual piece and then all put together making a very elaborate painting. 

The Founding of Tenochtitlan Description


The Founding of Tenochtitlan is an Aztec-Spanish style painting of the Aztec city of Tenochtitlan, Mexico. This painting involves many elements. For example, the lines are simple and the thickness seems the same in all the lines in the painting. There are many shapes and forms that make up this painting, there are some that stand out the most. The shapes that are most obvious are rectangles, squares and triangles. The colors in the painting vary, the most outstanding color is blue. The painting is painted from a two dimensional view. The canvas looks like it is aging and it appears to be that way from the coloring and the space in the background.


In the painting, many of the images appear repetitive, some look mirrored. The painting details on the eagle are more complex than the details on the humans. The painting itself does not have much shading, if any at all. There is very little negative space as well. This painting is simple and shares a history of the city of Tenochtitlan, Mexico.

Amida Description

    This piece is a Buddha figure created in 1053 by the artist Jocho.  There is a lot of line quality in this piece. There is an intricate line design in the part behind the main Buddha; this leads your eye right to that detail. There is also line quality in the shapes that the figure is sitting upon. The shapes the lines make up look like the figure is resting on some leaves. The color is a gold gild. The gild lays on top of wood which the statue is made of. With the different layers of gilding you can see value. Areas around the Buddha's head and shoulders make it seems as if there is a shadow being cast on the piece. The texture of the piece looks smooth, except for the outline of the robe on his chest, that almost looks rough or uneven. That also has to do with form, you can see the many different aspects of this statue, from the arms being defined, to the form of the head. 
    There is lots of contrast to this piece, from the design on the back of the "throne" to how that contrasts with the figure to make it appear as if he is sitting on something. There is also balance in the piece to where the colors balance with the texture. You can separate the piece into sections; one being the figure and the other being the throne. Along with that the piece is symmetrical. There is a pattern in the part behind the Buddha; its almost as if its abstract. On both sides the line pattern is the same. The proportions fit very well in this piece. The throne is just big enough so the figure sitting in it does not look too big or too small. The artist placed a lot of emphasis on the line detail and the leaf shapes. Even though they are not the main focus of the statue, attention is drawn to that area. 

Porcelain Vase Description

Porcelain Vases in an under glaze of cobalt blue.
Ming Dynasty, Xuande period (1426-35)
        These pieces are a pair of porcelain vases created during the Ming Dynasty in China around 1426-35 or also known as the Xuande period. The line quality of these pieces is very curvilinear which is prominently shown by the S curves that are used to form the shape of the pot it's self. The very shape of the object makes it out to be smooth in texture even though the pots them selves have cracks more than likely due to the age and handling of the pieces. Though some of the coloring does make the piece look rough. The coloring it's self is a cobalt blue. The blue is put on thicker in some areas and this has caused variations in the way it looks such as tinting and shading in some areas. This aspect also shows value in the piece. It is shown by the mere fact that even though it is one color it has many different forms of the color shown in different places enforcing detail.
         The pieces are very well balanced and symmetrical in both design and in structure. The structure works with the coloring to almost bring the viewer right to the dragon as if it was the main point of the piece. Part of this is the design on the bottoms of both pieces. They seem geometric in a sense but move up and get sharp as if in a way pointing, but both pieces share the same patterns in the clouds and heads in the center of the pots. When it comes to the pattern and the shape of both pots they flow with one another. As the pot gets larger in some areas the patterns match the change in size and it is the same when it shrinks. this causes a fluid motion that is soothing and harmonious as well as proportionate.

Paradise Under The Sea Description





Shigeru Aoki was a Japanese painter, best known for his work in combining Japanese religious and cultural subjects, like legends and gods, with Western art, a movement which was thriving in the late 19th century and early 20th century. Paradise Under The Sea describes a legend in which a prince visits the kingdom under a sea and falls in love with the princess there. The painting technique, the tall frame, and the visible brushstrokes makes clear Shigeru's dedication to Western ideals. The brush strokes are visible, the paint is thick and not smoothed completely, and the features of the characters, especially the figure in red, is very similar to popular Western profiles at the time. Nevertheless, it is still a work based on Japanese mythology and legend.


After research I discovered that Shigeru did more than take inspiration from Western Impressionists. He also used a diving helmet and suit to make sketches on the play of light under water. The prince has shadowy skin and the light can be seen on the women's wet, translucent dresses. This is a brilliant example of the combination of Japanese work, Western impressionist ideals, and an almost mathematical and scientific obsession with reality and the play of light and shadow. This piece is currently housed in the Ishibashi Museum of Art in Kurume, Fukuoka.

Killer Whale Description

     Bill Reid uses designs drawn from the Haida culture. There is a use of large crescent shapes in this piece, mainly shown in the curvature of the main body mass. The color is is a dark neutral bronze that has a few areas of more intense shines on it due to the material it is made of. The low relief on Killer Whale follows the curvature of the form rather than contrasting with it. 


Killer Whale is divided into three main sections: the head, the top fin, and the back fins. This allows the piece to follow the rule of thirds. There is also equally complementing negative spaces that correlate to the three main sections. The contrast in this piece lies in the relation of the background to the actual piece. There is a stark difference in the smooth metallic form of this piece and the lush natural scenery that surrounds it.

Thursday, October 13, 2016

A Young Woman Reading A Letter

Initial Reaction:
The first thing that stuck out to me was the line quality that is somewhat unique to Japanese art.  The lines are thin and delicate.  They are black on the face of the young woman, and white on her hair to ensure that the lines are still seen.  The lines of her clothing are thicker and more dramatic than the lines of her body, though this is offset by the fact that the lines are also less stark colours than white or black, which keeps the line work balanced.  The woman's hands and body both seem far too small for her face and head, which emphasizes her face and her expression of unhappiness.  There is much negative space, though perhaps less in traditional Chinese art.

After Research:
I discovered that this was a piece in a collection of women in various stages of being courted; all the images center around romance.  Her look into the distance and tight grip on the letter indicate longing.  This image was painted during the Edo period in Japan and is a highlight of that period.  Edo art is characterized by ukiyo-e art, dramatic works (such as kabuki theatre) and a certain amount of irreverence.  This explains the large head, dramatic eyebrows, and odd expression.  It was painted by Kitagawa Utamaro, as was the rest of the set.