Friday, 7 February 2014

Picture of the Day

It's The Artist Moved to Despair at the Grandeur of Antique Fragments, by Henry Fuseli, born on this day in 1741 - born Swiss, but British by adoption, for years the grand fromage of the Royal Academy. Most of his work mixes over-muscled Classicism with overstretched Mannerism, throwing in lashings of the Sublime and Terrible. His male figures tend to sinew-snapping, eye-popping emotion, while his females tend to languid and etiolated passivity. The effect is often ridiculous. His landscapes are non-existent - 'Damn Nature! She always puts me out' - which makes him a most un-English painter (especially as he largely avoided portraits too). For relaxation, he made elegant pornographic pictures - and fantasies like the one above, which strikes me as rather funny, but I'm not at all sure it's meant to be.


  1. I agree it makes me smile too but that might just be my thinking that the hand should have the adjoining finger raised too. But as for ''Damn Nature! She always puts me out' it appears the same is true for perspective and geometry.

  2. Yes, Nige, hilarious. Is that one of Kenny Everitt's hands?

  3. Something of the Bunuel about it.