I am a self-confessed art-illiterate. Now, Wiki Art is making me fall in love with art for the first time in my life. Now I am learning a little bit about genre, schools, era every day.
Here, the 5 paintings I’m lately digging through the collection of Wiki Art.
Painting: Las Meninas (Ladies-in-Waiting)
Artist: Diego Velázquez
Why I liked it:
This painting makes me dream about flying to Museo del Prado (sobbing at my broken state) and get a close-look.
The central figure of the portrait is Infanta Margaret Theresa, who is surrounded by her entourage. The artist himself is shown painting on a large canvas.
Now, look at the frame in the background. Do you see the reflections of the queen and the king on it?
One school of thought argues, Velázquez was painting the royal couple who were outside the pictorial frame. their images were in the mirror.
The king and queen were there to admire the artist on-work.’ Cause there is a misalignment of the position of their reflections and the fixed look of the artist.
Velázquez was looking towards the viewer. There could have been a reflector he was looking at, to portray the princess who was otherwise too fidgety for actual sitting.
The painting has other fine nuances and symbols. You can read it here.
Painting: Krishna (Spring in Kulu)
Artist: Nicholas Roerich
Why I liked it?
Nicholas Roerich was a revolutionary Russian public figure, painter, writer, philosopher-all rolled into one. His art said to have a hypnotic effect on the viewer.
Since childhood, I’ve reckoned Krishna in the background of Vrindavan- playing a flute, grazing, courting Radha and being sort of female heart-throb.
Or, leading in the battleground of Kurukshetra.
It amazes how Nicholas Roerich had imagined Krishna in the mountains, amidst blooming spring, doing what he would have loved the most- creating music.
Painting(s): South Indian Trilogy
Artist: Amrita Sher-Gil
Why I liked them?
I hate comparisons but Amrita Sher-Gil would have been our very own Frieda Kahlo, had she not passed away at the age of 28 before peaking at her career fully.
The three pictures had one common theme- the sad, melancholic eyes of the subjects.
The first picture showing three girls, bowing their heads to something bigger and fiercer, in which they had no control in.
This reflects the perpetual image of Indian women world-wide- docile and submissive.
But don’t you think there is a glimmer of steel-like resolution in their faces, the curves of their necks?
Bride’s Toilet showing the arrangement of an upcoming marriage. Women, encircling the bride, were preparing with a gloomy expression.
The next picture Brahmacharis showing the groom (and his pals)with same doomed look.
Now, if you are an Indian, you know the arranged marriage scenario too well.
People, who are not in love, used to (and tend to) get married largely due to family coercion and a plethora of other reasons.
Don’t these portraits reflect that too well?
If like me, you are waking to the art-scene too late, then do yourself a favor and log into Wiki Art. This is an ‘artistic’ gold-mine. Thank me later.