Discourses

Forside
Scott, 1887 - 283 sider
Composed as lectures to the students at the Royal Academy, Sir Joshua Reynold's Discourses both summarised the art theory of the previous 300 years and pointed towards attitudes which were to become prevalent in the 19th century. Reynolds' general theme is the education of the artist: the purpose of art, the nature of the creative process, and the artist's relation to tradition.

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Side 30 - There is no excellent Beauty that hath not some strangeness in the proportion. A man cannot tell, whether Apelles or Albert Durer were the more trifler; whereof the one would make a personage by geometrical proportions, the other by taking the best parts out of divers faces to make one Excellent.
Side 266 - I have taken another course, one more suited to my abilities, and to the taste of the times in which I live. Yet however unequal I feel myself" to that attempt, were I now to begin the world again, I would tread in the steps of that great master : to kiss the hem of his garment, to catch the slightest of his perfections, would be glory and distinction enough for an ambitious man.
Side 75 - ... a much more favourable disposition from their readers, and have a much more captivating and liberal air than he who attempts to examine, coldly, whether there are any means by which this art may be acquired; how the mind may be strengthened and expanded, and what guides will show the way to eminence. It is very natural...
Side 81 - The greatest natural genius cannot subsist on its own stock : he who resolves never to ransack any mind but his own, will be soon reduced, from mere barrenness, to the poorest of all imitations; he will be obliged to imitate himself, and to repeat what he has before often repeated. When we know the subject designed by such men, it will never be difficult to guess what kind of work is to be produced.
Side 213 - ... is, and ought to be, in many points of view, and strictly speaking, no imitation at all of external nature. Perhaps it ought to be as far removed from the vulgar idea of imitation as the refined civilized...
Side 270 - Angelo ; with all the rest of the cant of Criticism, which he emitted with that volubility which generally those orators have, who annex no ideas to their words. As we were passing through the rooms, in our way to the Gallery, I made him observe a whole length of Charles the First, by Vandyck, as a perfect representation of the character as well as the figure of the man.
Side 29 - ... the whole beauty and grandeur of the art consists, in my opinion, in being able to get above all singular forms, local customs, particularities, and details of every kind.
Side 275 - Maratti, and from thence to the very bathos of insipidity to which they are now sunk; so that there is no need of remarking, that where I mentioned the Italian painters in opposition to the Dutch, I mean not the moderns, but the heads of the old Roman and Bolognian Schools; nor did I mean to include, in my idea of an Italian painter, the Venetian school, which may be said to be the Dutch part of the Italian genius. I have only to add a word of advice to the Painters, — that, however excellent they...
Side 28 - This great ideal perfection and beauty are not to be sought in the heavens, but upon earth. They are about us, and upon every side of us.
Side 220 - Garrick, has been as ignorantly praised by his friend Fielding; who doubtless imagined he had hit upon an ingenious device, by introducing in one of his novels (otherwise a work of the highest merit) an ignorant man, mistaking Garrick's representation of a scene in Hamlet for reality.

Om forfatteren (1887)

Sir Joshua Reynolds was the most influential and important painter of Georgian England, the first president of the Royal Academy, and, so to speak, the greatest establishment figure in English art. Born into a cultured family (unlike most artists of his day), he was a learned man, in touch with the leading literary figures of the time, Samuel Johnson (see Vol. 1) among them. He received thorough training in Italy (1750--52), where he studied the works of Michelangelo, Raphael, and Titian. He thus became a confirmed neoclassicist, but some influences from the baroque style of Rubens are also discernible. His Discourses, held at the Royal Academy and widely disseminated in print, are the most important documents of eighteenth-century classicism in art and exercised great influence. As a painter, Reynolds excelled in portraiture. Many members of the high aristocracy of his time were painted by him in the grand manner, which he combined with subtlety and sensitivity. His technique was often faulty, and many of his pictures have cracked or lost much of their color. He was extraordinarily prolific until blindness struck him in his last year.

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