Understanding Art SLPA

Under the title "There May Be Trouble Ahead," this min-exhibition showcases artworks from several different times and places. Each artworks leads the viewer to consider what they know, or think that they know, about what is destined to happen next. There's a great difference between the way the viewer experiences the scene and the way it is experienced by the participants in each scene, some of whom are filled with optimism, or a sense of purpose that only the viewer can recognize as ill-fated.

In Brueghel's famous version of the Tower of Babel, we can see the powerful directors of the project in the left foreground. They seem to remain hopeful about their project, which at this moment seems to be proceeding according to plan.
This 19th century photograph of ancient Egyptian collosal sculpture reflects the Romantic interest in ruins. The massive stoneworks have been defaced by humans and degraded by the elements, but we can't help but imagine majestic aspirations for immortality at the time of their creation.
By the time Remington created his iconic images of cowboys and Indians, the native tribes were a faint shadow of their former selves and were easy to romanticize. In this work, created late in Remington's life, there is ambiguity about the purpose of the buffalo guise and the exchange of glances -- who is the hunter and who is the hunted?
In the Greek myth, Icarus loses his head when he takes to the air in the waxen wings his father has created, and hubris is punished when his wings melt and he falls to the sea. This painting takes a surprising angle on the story: the young, sensuous Icarus is openly ignoring his father's instructions as he gestures out to the viewer. Care to join him?
Poor Saint Anthony, forever tormented by the most horrific demons that the artists of the Northern Renaissance could devise. In this telling, Anthony is hidden away, both from the demons that he scarcely notices, and from the viewer in his little niche on the lower left. We are free to visually leave the conflict aside as we wander about through the spectacular landscape teeming with life.
Credits: All media
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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