The Assassination of the Emperor

Here I present another fragment of lore from The Leaves of Hellebore series –

assassination woman female emperor history ancient fantasy art illustration drawing biblical lore fine art j glover josh glover artist
The Assassination of the Emperor

After the Fell War and the disappearance of the Eldar; Mankind was left to fill the power vacuum that had been left behind; after decades of wars between the various clans and tribes the lands were divided up into larger kingdoms and thus the Age of Kings began.

This new kingdom arrangement brought an element of peace to the known world and produced a climate perfect for a boost in population growth and advancement; but after a few centuries the kingdoms began fighting again and this culminated in the War of the Kings and the birth of the Empire; founded by the general of the victorious army, Evrat.

Evrat, the leader of the newly founded Empire went on from the War of the Kings with a large army and continued on a series of campaigns conquering and devastating the resisting factions of the kingdoms until after fifteen years of proclaiming the new Empire he settled into the capital that he had built; Evradis.

Years of warfare and being on the frontlines of major battles had never proved too much for Emperor Evrat and his reputation only grew with every breath that he drew, but ultimately it was his penchant for prostitutes that proved to be his downfall; he was assassinated in a brothel at the behest of his brother-in-law who assumed the role of Emperor afterwards.

Emperor Evrat’s legacy lived on far beyond the man himself and the Empire is still in place four hundred years since its founding and is more powerful then ever, it has conquered and dominated most of the known world and continues to hold it in subjection.

Gallio Lupinus – History of the Empire Vol.I 

JGlover

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Maíno’s Adorations: Heaven on Earth

At the beginning of the week I took an inspiration trip to the National Gallery in London, (see the post for that and the artworks I found inspiring here!) and I was fortunate enough to see a mini exhibition whilst there – Maíno’s Adorations: Heaven on Earth. This is the first time these two works have been exhibited in the UK and this free exhibit will be open until 29th January 2017.

I had never before heard of this artist and so it was a pleasant introduction to him through his work, before jumping into the artwork let’s take a look at the man himself.

Fray Juan Bautista Maíno

Maíno was born in 1581 in a Spanish town named Pastrana which is about 80km from Madrid, where it is thought he underwent his artistic training. Like all the great artists of the age he traveled to Italy in his younger years and seemingly learned a lot about his trade in the process; he is recorded as living in Rome between 1609-10 and although it is unknown when he arrived in the city, it is known he was there by at least 1604.

Maíno returned to Spain in 1611 and continued working and receiving commissions and then at around 1616 he moved to Madrid and became master of painting to Prince Philip; who later became King Philip IV.

Maíno had a long and very successful career but in spite of that there are few of his works that are known; his paintings express the knowledge that he had of the stylistic tendencies prevalent in early 17th century Rome. His work also shows that he was inspired and influenced by artits such as Caravaggio, Gentileschi, Carracci and Reni.

Maíno died in 1649 in the College of Santo Tomas of Madrid.

Maíno’s Adorations

Fray Juan Bautista Maino - Adoration of the Shepherds - classical art - religious - biblical - painting - national gallery
Fray Juan Bautista Maino – Adoration of the Shepherds
Fray Juan Bautista Maino - Adoration of the Kings - Maino's Adorations - baroque art classical biblical religious painting
Fray Juan Bautista Maino – Adoration of the Kings

These two paintings measure over three metres in height and were orignally part of a ‘retablo’ (altarpiece) for the high altar of the Dominican church of San Pedro Mártir in Toledo between 1612-14.

They both sh0w the deep impression that had been left on Maíno by Caravaggio’s works which he would have seen whilst in Rome; the chiaroscuro lighting and the naturalistic approach to painting are clearly evident.

Another note of importance on these two paintings is that as well as being the greatest works created by Maíno, ‘the two adorations are also among the earliest Spanish paintings to have been executed in a Caravaggesque style’. This is also evidence of the far reaching influence of Caravaggio across Europe in the early 17th century.

My personal favourite of the two paintings is the Adoration of the Shepherds; the muted pallete works so well for the scene and although the composition is probably stronger in the Kings, in the Shepherds it works well enough to keep me captivated and engaged. I also find that the Shepherds painting shows a strong sense of humility on behalf of both the artist and the subject.

Maíno included a self portrait in the Adoration of the Kings, he is posed as a pilgrim on the left of the scene pointing towards the infant Christ. There is also an array of expensive and luxurious drapery which showcases Maíno’s knowledge and skill in the area, a lot of which was possibly influenced my his father who had been a cloth merchant.

All in all, this exhibition was well worth seeing and I’m glad that I have been introduced and made aware of another incredible artist from the past; being one that had been inspired by Caravaggio who is one of my favourites makes it even better.

JGlover

Caravaggio vs. Rocco Normanno “David and Goliath” – Compare and Contrast

Another repost of an essay I wrote in 2014 whilst at college.

Caravaggio - David and Goliath - 1599 - Oil on Canvas (110 x 91cm)
Caravaggio – David and Goliath – 1599 – Oil on Canvas (110 x 91cm)
Rocco Normanno - David and Goliath - 2006 - Oil on Canvas (150 x 150cm)
Rocco Normanno – David and Goliath – 2006 – Oil on Canvas (150 x 150cm)

For this compare and contrast essay, I have chosen two works of the same title “David and Goliath”, both painted with oil paint on canvas, but 407 years apart. The first of the paintings was done by the master painter Michelangelo Merisi Caravaggio in 1599; the second by Rocco Normanno in 2006. Both of the artists were/are Italian, Caravaggio was born in a town of the same name in Lombardy, northern Italy. Rocco Normanno was born in Taurisano, Lecce. In this writing I am going to pick them apart for their similarities and differences.

Continue reading “Caravaggio vs. Rocco Normanno “David and Goliath” – Compare and Contrast”

Vatican Angel – Watercolour

Vatican Angel - Watercolour on Paper
Vatican Angel – Watercolour on Paper

This is a painting that I done in watercolour in March, I created this using a photograph that I previously took, as a reference to work from.

The original statue is to be found on the Ponte Vittorio Emanuele bridge in Rome, leading one into the Vatican city, I’ve tried researching who designed the sculpture and who made it but without many results¹. The bridge itself was constructed to the designs of Ennio de Rossi.

Overall this painting is an interpretation of the battle between dark and light, good and evil, I have attempted to describe this battle in a few different ways within the piece.

To begin with is the obvious, a silhouetted angel figure, a figure that is instantly associated with light and love, is a dark black silhouette, no light emanating from the angel whatsoever, but it is illuminated by the lighter background behind it, almost as though it is being pushed forward by the light, and away from the light.

Upon further examination of the light behind the angel, it becomes evident that it is actually a storm cloud, battling it out with the much lighter and more welcoming pristine blue sky, whether the cloud is building up, ready to engulf the world of light or whether it is dissipating is open to the interpretation of the viewer.

That brings us back to the angel itself, so at first a vision of darkness, it’s now questionable whether the angel is fighting off the darkness that’s surrounding it and seemingly fighting a losing battle; being consumed by the darkness from within and becoming another fallen angel; or is the angel sacrificing itself, consuming the darkness to bring the light to the world?

JG

 

 

¹If anyone reading this knows who the artist was that designed and sculpted these statues I am dying to know so I would be thrilled if you could enlighten me, I’m pretty certain that they’re not works of Bernini, although there’s tons of his designs dotted around the entire city; both Rome and the Vatican.

Romans 12:12

Romans 12:12 - Watercolour, Charcoal, on A4 Watercolour Paper
Romans 12:12 – Watercolour, Charcoal, on A4 Watercolour Paper

Romans 12:12 – Rejoice in the hope. Endure under tribulation. Persevere in prayer.

This piece of work took me about 4.5 hours to complete, I started by giving the paper a wash with yellow ochre watercolour, to give a kind of aged look to the surface I was to draw on. I then sketched out my wife’s hands in a praying position, using charcoal. I had to work from a photograph after the initial sketch so I worked all the detail and tone from photo, and heavily defined every line I could see clearly on the hands.

The title of this piece, is a scripture that I found afterwards that I thought to be quite fitting in more ways than one and I hope that the image conveys the meaning clearly.

JG

Caravaggio & Normanno – David and Goliath

I’ve recently been piled under course work for my Art course that I’m studying at the moment and therefore have had trouble finding the time to write a new post, however, a new assignment I have to work on for my Academic Skills is a compare and contrast of two pieces of art. I’m going to write an analysis on each piece before I attempt to compare and contrast them so those will be posted onto here, followed by the final written piece that I do.

The works I have chosen for this assignment are both depictions of David and Goliath, and painted in the same medium, but 407 years apart, so it should be an interesting subject to approach.

Rocco Normanno - David and Goliath - 2006 - Oil on Canvas (150 x 150cm)
Rocco Normanno – David and Goliath – 2006 – Oil on Canvas (150 x 150cm)
Caravaggio - David and Goliath - 1599 - Oil on Canvas (110 x 91cm)
Caravaggio – David and Goliath – 1599 – Oil on Canvas (110 x 91cm)

I’m a big fan of Caravaggio’s work and his life in general, Normanno is new to me though, I only discovered him by accident and since looking for artworks for this essay. I can already feel that this is going to be an interesting process and I’m looking forward to picking these artworks apart to find out which artist is David and which is Goliath.

JG