Sunday, March 13, 2011

Ingres drawing in his painting

OK, lets see if I can tie this thing up. Above is a portrait, in oil this time, by Ingres. Lets note the similarity in the painting to the drawings I have been showing you for the last few days. Here is the head from that portrait below.

Below is the head I posted the other night still wearing its ovoid delineation explanatory line. As you can see the same technologies I have been discussing the last few days are in the head above in paint. The values are suppressed and the painting is a creation primarily of line and not of mass. Ingres painting is a colored drawing. There is more modeling in the painting than in his pure line drawing, but there is still a dominance of line over shading. The sinuous line that defines the forms is superior to the modeling. It is particularly obvious in the hand above.

Ingres has continued the strategies of expressing his form through other methods than modeling. The ribbon like hair above and in the painted portrait express the curvature of the skull, for instance. Notice how the lips are wrapped around the face showing how the forms turn there.

There is no clutter in the lights, and there are no obvious brushstrokes to clutter up his forms. Everything is refined down to clear ovoid shapes. It is an austere refined beauty. It is classical. We are so accustomed to the romantic bold and bravura handling today, most of the artists we revere and who appear in the pages of our contemporary art magazines are romantic, but there is another approach. The crystalline perfection of these formal paintings is irreproachable and they have a purity of vision that can influence our paintings today.


Philip Koch said...

Good post, once again.

In this oil portrait Ingres was knocking a lot of balls right out of the park. In additon to the figure, he makes great little abstract compositons down in the lower right and lower left corners of the canvas. They add a bit of surprise to the overall painting.

willek said...

How does the direction of the light source affect or influence what you are talking about here? That frontal lighting seems to do a lot of it for him. Is that light direction a feature of the technique?

billspaintingmn said...

That painting is so quiet you can hear a pin drop! said...

Sometimes a purity of vision is accompanied by sterility. But we do net see any of that with Ingres' work. He has a heart felt expressive sensitivity which is fully integrated into his purity.

There is something in his work for everyone to admire.

Barbara Carr said...

This painting creeps me out! Fabulous slick surface aside, the model's right arm is growing out of her midriff, plus her shoulders in the reflection are tilted the wrong way. Too wonky for me.

James Gunter said...

After your last few posts about Ingres' drawing, I've been looking forward to this post tying his drawing and painting together.

Your blog casts a very wide net over the visual arts, so often sending me searching books and the Internet for more information on a particular painter or style. (How I wish I could study the actual paintings more often!) This blog also gets me thinking about how the broad range of styles and eras might all relate to each other. I enjoy a wide variety of drawing and painting styles, and your posts provide a point of departure for me to do the research and study I know I should be doing anyway.

Thanks for the virtual push in the right direction!

stapeliad said...

I have really enjoyed this Ingres series, thank you.

Stapleton Kearns said...

Thank you sir.

Stapleton Kearns said...

I think that any light source will work but probably less pronounced shadows are better.

Stapleton Kearns said...

In fact pins were dropping and you missed them.

Stapleton Kearns said...

They are not cold or sterile are they?

Stapleton Kearns said...

Doesn't bother me.I might be a wonk though.

Stapleton Kearns said...

Thanks, wait till we get to transfer printed pottery of the 19th century!

Stapleton Kearns said...