Lapis Lazuli

 

Lapis lazuli can be found in art museums around the world. The expensive rock has been added to sculptures to give them hints of blue and luxury. When ground into powder it becomes a rich blue pigment that artists covet. The pigment, at one time was the way artists added brilliant shades of blue to their canvas until tube paint nearly made it a thing of the past. Some fine artists are holding to their countries artistic history, blending the pigment with modern works of art. Others are using the material in its raw form, fashioning unique creations that place the rock center stage. Lapis lazuli has been crafted into board games, small statues, jewelry, and other crafts for centuries. Artisans continue to use the blue stone in many of their crafts to this day.

The sculpture is an example of fine art. It was crafted to be visually appealing but not practically useful. I chose Barrias’ piece because I was unable to take my eyes off the strength yet delicacy he was able to achieve. I like the artist’s use of natural material – onyx, marble, lapis lazuli, and malachite. The material added natural color from different parts of the world that I feel define the beauty of the sculpture. The colors are rich with just the right about of lapis lazuli, the folds and drapes of the stone chiseled into silk, but I am attracted to the eyes. Her head is pointed down but her eyes are staring directly at her audience, possibly wanting or daring them to study her.
This painting is an example of fine art. It doesn't have a hands on purpose, it was painted to look at and reflect on. I chose to add Imran Qureshi’s work to my gallery because it is thought provoking and draws me in. I wish I could afford to hang this painting in my house. I am sure there is a different meaning behind the piece but I am drawn to the human element, strength. I like the beauty of the gold petals he paints in the background, perhaps depicting land. I am fascinated by the dripping red and completely sutured egg shape on one side, while the divided half is just partly sutured and dripping blue. Is this pain of war and death? I am attracted to the many bright colors the artist uses in his painting, it would be easy to create sensory overload but he eases the colors in with very small brush.
This is an example of craft. It was created with the intent to use, the game is practical. I chose the game because of the large amount of lapis lazuli in this small piece and because the great skill I believe artisans would have had to craft the material into a board game. I appreciate and like that luxurious stone and shell was transformed to create something for people to pass the time, bet on, and probably to develop strategy (much like chess). The idea to create a drawer within the board game to store the pieces in was even thought of. I am drawn to the thick amounts of lapis lazuli that borders the outside of the game weaves around the shell squares.
This is an example of fine art. the artist purposefully created art for impractical reasons, people can only contemplate her meaning for creating the work. I chose this unusual work of art because the rocks appear to be equally significant to the meaning of the work as the bust. I usually see raw material used as a pigment or shaped into sculpture, I like the artist’s use of it in its natural form. I am unsure of the meaning; perhaps she is at one with nature. I am attracted to the simplicity, I am drawn away from the head and wondering what the meaning behind the exact placement of the rocks is.
This is an example of fine art. It was commissioned to be visually appealing but not practical in use. I chose Mantegna’s work because it is a great representation of lapis lazuli used as a pigment. I like this small painting because it symbolizes the typical customer commissioning art during the 15th century and able to afford exotic paint like lapis lazuli. The sitters fur collar and probable silk clothing make me wonder what he did for a living, a merchant, the buyer of rare goods? I am rarely attracted to portrait paintings but Mantegna gave this man character with grey chin stubble and deep set facial line coupled with once rich in tone colors and I am entranced.
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This user gallery has been created by an independent third party and may not always represent the views of the institutions, listed below, who have supplied the content.
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