Our team took votes on our top 5 creative paintings.
I scream you scream we all scream for Munch’s The Scream, the Mona Lisa of anxiety. In 2012, a pastel version of Edvard Munch’s iconic evocation of modern angst fetched a then-astronomical price of $120 million at auction. Munch’s career was more than just a single painting. He’s generally acknowledged as the precursor to Expressionism, influencing artists such 20th-century artists as Egon Schiele, Erich Heckel, and Max Beckmann.
Leonardo expresses the human condition in a nutshell – indeed, his rendition of the womb resembles an opened horse chestnut casing. Inside is the beginning of us all laid bare. Five hundred years ago, this artist and scientist could portray the human mystery with a wonder that is not religious but biological he holds up humanity as a fact of nature. It is for me the most beautiful work of art in the world.
When Picasso started to paint his protest at the bombing of Guernica, the ancient Basque capital, by Hitler’s air force on behalf of Franco in the Spanish Civil War, he was at the height of his powers. Thirty years after painting his subversive modernist grenade of a picture Les Demoiselles d’Avignon, his cubist intelligence was now enriched by the mythology and poetry unleashed by the surrealist movement. He also looked back to such historical paintings as Raphael’s Fire in the Borgo as he set down the greatest human statement of the 20th century.
“Bedlam,” “scandal,” and “hilarity” were among the epithets used to describe what is now considered Georges Seurat’s greatest work. Additionally, it is one of the most remarkable paintings of the nineteenth century when it was first exhibited in Paris. Seurat labored extensively over A Sunday on La Grande Jatte—1884. Reworking the original as well as completing numerous preliminary drawings and oil sketches.
With what resembles scientific precision, the artist tackled the issues of color, light, and form. Inspired by research in optical and color theory, he juxtaposed tiny dabs of colors that, through optical blending, form a single and, he believed, more brilliantly luminous hue. To make the experience of the painting even more intense, he surrounded the canvas with a frame of painted dashes and dots, which he, in turn, enclosed with a pure white wood frame, similar to the one exhibited today. The very immobility of the figures and the shadows they cast makes them forever silent and enigmatic. Like all great masterpieces, La Grande Jatte continues to fascinate and elude.
“One instant, one aspect of nature contains it all,” said Claude Monet, referring to his late masterpieces. The water landscapes that he produced at his home in Giverny between 1897 and his death in 1926. These works replaced the varied contemporary subjects he had painted from the 1870s through the 1890s with a single, timeless motif—water lilies. The focal point of these paintings, the artist’s beloved ﬂower garden. These featured a water garden and a smaller pond spanned by a Japanese footbridge.
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