MCA6 Realism

"Every age reflects its own image into its arts." Meaning, each historic time period can be characterized by the art and architecture it produced as it relates to the social and political happenings of the time.

Realism is an approach to art in which subjects are depicted in as straightforward a manner as possible, without idealizing them or following rules of formal or classic artistic theory.

Daumier shows realism within this painting by portraying what previous styles never would- common people. None of the subjects in this piece are shown to be anything more extravagant than middle class.
Courbet also uses the main characteristic of realism in this painting as not only is the subject two common men wrestling, but also neither of them are wearing anything more than tattered shorts.
Before this artistic movement, a painting of a "laundress" (maid type) was virtually unheard of, because it was not what people wanted to see. Now however, this was the most basic element of common art.
The woman in this painting is void of clothing, dirty, sitting on plain ground, and playing with an equally dirty dog. This is real, nothing is held back, the basis of this movement.
Lawyers, members of the middle class, were never regarded highly enough for portraits until realism became a trend. This painting also has no embellishments. Artists wanted nothing more or less than what was real.
The Irish were not highly regarded during this time period (or surrounding time periods) so a professional portrait of a "beautiful Irish girl" was scarce. But then again, it contained the true ways of reality.
This painting shows an uprising, or revolution. Revolutionary paintings up until this point were mostly of only "important" officials of the rebellions, such as Marat in the French Revolution. This painting however, showcases the actual peasants of the uprising in action.
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