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Art From Us MUSEUM GUIDE : Harvard Art Museums : Room 2200

Harvard Art Museums – Room 2200

Art From Us, Museum Guide #866

Art From Us presents a must-see Museum Guide daily, where we showcase specific artworks in specific museums – from across the globe. Today, for Art From Us, Museum Guide #866 the spotlight is on the Harvard Art Museums’ Room 2200. Showcasing a collection of The Emergence of Romanticism in Early Nineteenth-Century France.

The three works in focus are :

  1. Rembrandt’s Daughter, Joseph Mallord William Turner, 1827.
  2. A Turk Surreders to a Greek Horseman, Ferdinand-Victor-Eugene Delacroix, 1856.
  3. Portrait of a Young Woman in White, Julien Hudson, 1840.

The significance of the 3 works chosen for Art From Us, Museum Guide #866

As is best explained by the digital catalogue of the Harvard Art Museums :

“A sustained commitment to the tenets of neoclassicism persisted after the French Revolution, and artists such as Jacques-Louis David and his school continued to adhere to the sculptural and archaeological approach to form that they had helped popularize in the previous century. However, their style was soon challenged by romanticism, which proposed a radically different kind of representation.”

What is Romanticism?

Romanticism refers to an organised artistic and literary movement that took place in the 19th century in parts of Europe. The movement was born as a reaction to the previously adopted Neoclassical style of painting. While Neoclassical artists found inspiration in history, the Romantics looked to the world around them  – landscapes, society and politics were some key themes.

Romantics often painted en plein air, meaning they painted outdoors instead of in a studio. Further, while previous art movements had emphasised a faithful depiction of the subject matter, the Romantics believed capturing the ‘feeling’ of the scene they were painting. Capturing the essence of a moment was of prime importance to them.

The paintings housed in Harvard Art Museums’ Room 2200 are great examples of the artistic tendencies of the Romantics.

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