That means both exhibitions were acts of extraordinary organization, particularly for this charming little Dutch city, where Bosch lived, worked and died, but where none of his art remained.
Hieronymus Bosch Essay Examples
The demonic visions of Bosch summon terrors of damnation from a half-millennium ago, but they also stir contemplation about what hell means today and how Bosch helped shape that view. For contemporary viewers, Bosch imagery can convey a flavor of farce — for example, the bird-headed monster wearing a cooking pot as a helmet while devouring a man whose backside emits fire, smoke and a flock of blackbirds. Kooky as that appears now, the painter himself found little to smirk at.
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Larry Silver, a professor of art history at the University of Pennsylvania, said Bosch held a despondent view of humanity, believing evil was embedded in us all. Little is known of Bosch, not even his birth year, estimated as Art was the family business: His father was a painter, as were his grandfather and most of his uncles and brothers. His era was one of great tension, as the values of late medieval life receded, and those of the early Renaissance advanced.
While Leonardo was sketching flying machines, Bosch sketched a spiked paddle wheel to impale the damned and carry them into the mouth of a ravening monster.
Bosch took existing medieval imagery — nude men and women speared by demons, flung into flames, cooked alive, eaten by Satan himself — and went further. Previous paintings of the Last Judgment, such as those by Giotto, Fra Angelico, and Rogier van der Weyden, were symmetrical, with paradise on one side, eternal damnation on the other. For Bosch, the heaven option scarcely appeared. His works are clogged with human villainy and ungodly fiends — even pastoral backgrounds include blips of horror: a distant gallows or one beast devouring another.
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He grafts butterfly wings onto rat-faced humanoids; he imagines a toothy fish with human legs in stylish leather boots feasting on a human. By Carey Dunne 2 minute Read.
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