UA1-WA:P2-p1 Project 1 Review, plus some tutor feedback

Time for a brief review of the work done for Part two Project one: Mythology in the High Renaissance. Here I’ll follow the order of the course notes rather than as I attempted exercises.

Engraving Published by: Johannes Boel After: Marten van Cleve I Print made by: Philips Galle, Arachne (1574) © The Trustees of the British Museum http://www.britishmuseum.org/research/collection_online/collection_object_details.aspx?objectId=1521786&partId=1&searchText=1950,0520.436&page=1

Engraving Published by: Johannes Boel After: Marten van Cleve I Print made by: Philips Galle, Arachne (1574)
© The Trustees of the British Museum
http://www.britishmuseum.org/research/collection_online/collection_object_details.aspx?objectId=1521786&partId=1&searchText=1950,0520.436&page=1

For a Research Point on paintings of a mythological subject I chose the story of Arachne and Minerva (see 8-July-2013).

Looking back now I see that I became somewhat distracted by different translations of the text – fascinating, but not the goal of the research. The two artworks I focused on were very different in their treatment of the myth. This print of the Netherlandish school uses the myth in a factual way as a personification of textile production.

Peter Paul Rubens, Pallas and Arachne (1636–37) Image used with kind permission of Virginia Museum of Fine Arts http://www.vmfa.state.va.us/Collections/European_Art/Painting,_Sculpture_+_Works_on_Paper/Rubens,_Peter_Paul_58_18_Pallas_and_Arachne.aspx

Peter Paul Rubens, Pallas and Arachne (1636–37)
Image used with kind permission of Virginia Museum of Fine Arts
http://www.vmfa.state.va.us/Collections/European_Art/Painting,_Sculpture_+_Works_on_Paper/Rubens,_Peter_Paul_58_18_Pallas_and_Arachne.aspx

The second work was painted around sixty years later and is a dramatic and emotional moment in the story. I’ve now started reading in the course textbook (Honour and Fleming, 2009) about Baroque painting in the seventeenth century, including quite a lot of information about Rubens. For some reason I’ve had fixed in my mind an association of Rubens with Italy, but although he spent some time in Italy and diligently studied the works of the masters there he trained and lived most of his life in or near Antwerp. This geographical link makes the contrast between the two works seem even more pronounced.

Nicolas Régnier Hero and Leander (c. 1625-1626) Image provided by NGV http://www.ngv.vic.gov.au/col/work/4289

Nicolas Régnier
Hero and Leander
(c. 1625-1626)
Image provided by NGV
http://www.ngv.vic.gov.au/col/work/4289

Working on an annotation of this painting of Hero and Leander drove home to me the value of seeing the work in person (see post 23-July-2013). There are few overt symbolic “clues” to the myth given here, and one I completely misread in the web image – sea shells, not garlic! That direct, personal experience also helped me to build a connection to the work, in some sense to experience it as well as look at it. In his report on my first assignment my tutor commented favourably on my increasing use of emotive language. I’ve been trying to push that further, to respond to artworks and not just analyse and dissect them in an intellectual way.

Plate

Plate: Europa and the bull
Pesaro, workshop of the Zenobia painter
c. 1552-60

My choice of subject for an exercise on analyzing a sixteenth-century Italian painting felt a little dangerous, although I believe it meets all the stated requirements. I gave my rationale in my post (see 28-July-2013).

Wanting to do some more in-depth research on this piece led me to another great local resource, just downstairs from where the plate itself is displayed – the Edmund and Joanna Capon Research Library at the Art Gallery of NSW (http://www.artgallery.nsw.gov.au/research/library/). Not only is this a treasure trove of information, I just loved being there – quiet and calm, surrounded by interesting books, light flooding into my study carrel from the windows above, in a new corner of one of my favourite places in Sydney.

ngv_03In fact my local art gallery felt so much one of my safe and familiar places that I deliberately went elsewhere for the required visit to an art gallery. For that I travelled down to Melbourne, to the National Gallery of Victoria (NGV – see 21-July-2013). In that report I focused on the International building of NGV. I didn’t mention the clever way NGV co-ordinated exhibitions. While I was there the Monet’s Garden exhibition was on in the International exhibition space (www.ngv.vic.gov.au/whats-on/exhibitions/exhibitions/monets-garden), showing works from The Musée Marmottan Monet, Paris. In the Australian exhibition space was AUSTRALIAN IMPRESSIONISTS IN FRANCE (www.ngv.vic.gov.au/whats-on/exhibitions/exhibitions/australian-impressionists-in-france). I spent a morning at the Australian Impressionists exhibition, but will delay writing about it until I reach that period in my studies.

That Australian content remains a major goal for me in as much of the course as I can manage, and my tutor was happy with my adaptation of assignment one tasks to Australian conditions. When in Melbourne it was an amazing experience to actually hold and leaf through the Book of Hours at the State Library of Victoria (see my annotation of 22-June-2013 and the story of my visit posted 17-July-2013) – something so unexpected and that I still can’t quite believe, and certainly impossible if I hadn’t kept that local focus. It was an incredible bonus on a trip that was aimed at the older artworks displayed in the NGV. Scale is an interesting thing. Seeing that Book, how it fit into my hands, enforced the idea of its original purpose and the people who used it. Being small also made it more precious, more jewel-like. In contrast, having Régnier’s Hero and Leander fill my field of vision intensified the emotion of the captured moment.

I received my tutor’s feedback on Assignment One very quickly, just as I was beginning this project. Overall it was very positive and encouraging. Unfortunately the Assignment essay itself was a complete miss – I totally misread the question (a review of the textbook). I focused on the practical usability of the book, ignoring the content and issues such as any prejudice or assumptions in the selection of material included. Perhaps my situation as a female non-indigenous Australian with a particular interest in textiles led me to expect and accept a bias in any “comprehensive” textbook, with little attention given to my direct concerns. My current plan is to return to the Assignment before assessment but after I have completed reading for the course – who knows, perhaps I’ll find mention of Australia beyond the tiny page and a half allocated to indigenous art.

Honour, H. and Fleming, J. (2009) A World History of Art (revised 7th edition). London: Laurence King.

UA1-WA:P2-p1 Project 1 Review
Understanding Art 1 – Western Art.
Part two: From the High Renaissance to Post-Impressionism
Project one: Mythology in the High Renaissance
Topic: Review

0 Responses to “UA1-WA:P2-p1 Project 1 Review, plus some tutor feedback”



  1. Leave a Comment

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s




Instagram

#voteyes

Calendar of Posts

August 2013
M T W T F S S
« Jul   Sep »
 1234
567891011
12131415161718
19202122232425
262728293031  

Archives

Categories


%d bloggers like this: