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

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Astelle, Keeper of the Tomes

Here we are at last for another installment of the Leaves of Hellebore series, I’m still building a plot and this particular character’s introduction is integral to the main story which will begin to unfold soon.

Fantasy Art - J Glover Art - Josh Glover Art - Illustration - Portrait - Drawing - Leaves of Hellebore - Visual Story

“Astelle clutches her favourite of all the many books of Loregarde; a large, heavy and ancient tome of which she can understand nothing written within; but the beautifully written script is something magical in itself and captivating in the fullest sense leaving no need to understand, just a strong sense of admiration and wonderment.”

Astelle is the curator and keeper of the Loregarde Paper House, it boasts the largest collection of scrolls, records, tomes and manuscripts in the world and is also a place of learning for the sages.

Situated in the palace district of the Empire’s capital city, it is heavily guarded and entry is permitted only with special permission and even then not everything is allowed to be read by those permitted entry into the building; there is also a small collection of texts from the Eldar days although there are no known persons who can understand or translate them.

If you haven’t already then be sure to subscribe to my blog via email to be notified when I publish future posts, the subscription box can be found further down the page.

Also follow me on Instagram @JGloverArt if you wish to see my work in progress.

Until next time, farewell!

JGlover

Dante Gabriel Rossetti – Beata Beatrix

George Frederic Watts-Dante Gabriel Rossetti-Pre-Raphaelite-Brotherhood-Art-Painting-Portrait-Oil Painting-History-Dante-Raphael
Dante Gabriel Rossetti – Painted by George Frederic Watts – 1871

Dante Gabriel Rossetti; a translator, illustrator, poet and most importantly for this post, an incredible artist. As one of the founding fathers of the Pre-Raphaelite Brotherhood, he inspired and influenced an entire generation of artists and writers both contemporaries and successive to himself. Dante was born on the 12th May 1828 and he died on the 9th April 1882, leaving behind a wealth of work and a strong legacy that would live on long beyond his own lifetime.

Dante Gabriel Rossetti spent a lot of time working on English translations of Italian poetry and found himself strongly influenced by the famous Italian poet, Dante Alighieri (1265-1321) with whom he strongly identified. It was Rossetti’s identification to Dante Alighieri that inspired the painting which is the subject of this post.

With that said we’re going to be looking at one piece of work in particular; a painting full of meaning and symbolism, painted in Rossetti’s signature style and telling a powerful story rife with emotion and feeling.

Continue reading “Dante Gabriel Rossetti – Beata Beatrix”

Wudang Monk – Ink Drawing

I decided it was time to upload some more recent artwork of mine so with that in mind here is a concept that I’ve been working on lately; it has currently culminated in an ink drawing which will be a preliminary piece for a future painting.

As is customary for me nowadays, it all started with a gathering of reference pictures and that led to some initial sketches and studies.

Continue reading “Wudang Monk – Ink Drawing”

Ruins Project – Back to Business

It felt like a lifetime ago that I last wrote a post for the Ruins Project and upon checking when the last post was, my suspicions were confirmed. Between one thing and another, circumstances have dictated the path of my work over the past month or so; I won’t go into all that here and now as it’s pretty irrelevant at this point.

The good thing is that I’m now back in my Sanctum Sanctorum and working again. I’ve been doing some little bits and pieces today, tomorrow will be much the same as I have a few small pieces I’m currently working on; Friday however, I will be back to painting and working towards getting this project finished.

Continue reading “Ruins Project – Back to Business”

Current Direction – Tristan and Yseult Art Project on Hold

In light of a few technicalities I’ve been having with getting started on my Tristan and Yseult painting, I’m going to put that on the back burner for a short while; though I have written an outline of the legend as I want it to be and will flesh that out and edit it to post real soon. For the painting itself, I will get round to it once the arisen problems with it have been solved.

In the meantime and due to the inspiration I received whilst writing my last post, I’m going to create some ‘Middle Earth’ themed artworks, it’s something I’m a huge fan of and also by regularly creating artworks it’s good practice and training for me.

This will mainly consist of loads of sketches and drawings, finally culminating in an oil painting showing one of Tolkien’s masterful narrative scenes; there’s also the possibility of one or two watercolour landscapes as well, I’m currently more comfortable with watercolours than I am with oils as I’m totally new to them therefore the one oil painting that I do produce may take some time to accomplish.

My next post will be on Wednesday 15th July and will contain some sketches that I’ve been doing for this project.

JGlover

Tristan and Yseult – A Legend of Celtic Origin – Art Project

So I had to come up with an idea for my next artwork project and with my goal of interpreting and bringing back to life British history, myths, legends and folklore, I have decided to work with a popular medieval romance tale that stems from Celtic legend; the story of ²Tristan and Yseult.

 There are numerous versions of this tale, but all of them contain prominent features and I will most probably play on the different aspects of each telling that appeal to me the most. As a base idea to work from I might even write up a short version of the story combining the various aspects and suiting to my own interpretation, thus making me able to create more works from this further down the line, that’s not presently set in stone though I’ll have to think about that¹.

With that in mind I won’t go into the nitty gritty details of the legend just yet although I have linked to the Britannica version of the tale.

As promised before, I will use the series of posts and updates on this project to show my preliminary studies, sketches and ideas, as well as a bit of prose or poetry that I intend to write for the particular scene that I will show in my finished painting. I have chosen the scene that I want to capture and have begun sketches, mainly to work out composition and background scenery, I’m also implementing a fair few symbolic features as well so I’ll have to hit the books and see what I come up with; some symbols I am certain of and relate to the story itself and therefore will definitely be added.

I’ll leave that there for now and my next post will contain my preparatory work that I’ve create up until that point, which will most probably be next Wednesday, when my posting schedule is due, this post is more of a taster for what’s to come and to give awareness of the project I am currently pursuing now that I’ve set my heart upon it.

¹More of a note to self than a definitive idea

²Link to the Britannica version of the legend Tristan and Yseult 

JG