The artwork of the divine comedy     Matthew Henry

Ever since Dante Alighieri wrote the Diving Comedy in 1320. Various different styles of artwork have been applied to the work of literature. Given the poem's incredibly vivid descriptive imagery, it was inevitable that artists from around the world would seek to apply their own techniques with color, texture, and pattern to this piece of classic literature.

This ominous set of bronze doors is a very famous sculpture representing the gates of Hell in the book Dante’s Inferno. Italian sculpture Auguste Rodin was commissioned to create these beautifully decorated, yet simultaneously unnerving ornate gates. While originally planning to represent the entire narrative of the poem around the door-frame in carved out patterns, the Sculpture decided to just create a clustered, randomized sequence of Hellish images towards the end.
As we get into the illustrations composed by William Blake, we really start to see were the imaginative imagery benefits greatly in the world of artistic expression. William Blake was commissioned for 102 illustrations for the classic poem. There are equal parts cool color tones and warm color tones, showing a contrast between beauty and savagery.
The next illustration commissioned for William Blake is the picture known as Dante running from the three beasts. Dante is seen running away from the three terrifying beasts, accompanied by Virgil. The use of color is very extravagant in William Blake’s work, especially in this piece. The way the character placement draws the viewers eye line is especially well crafted.
The last of the William Blake illustrations that depicted the events of the Divine Comedy is the one known as, “Antaeus setting down Dante and Virgil in the Last Circle of Hell.” Unlike most of the other pictures by William Blake, this one is mostly comprised out of cooler color temperatures.
The next illustration in this gallery is the piece of art known as “Paolo and Francesca da Rimini,” by Dante Gabriel Rossetti 1867. The texture and color here is a lot more realistic and natural looking than some of the other more of the stylized pieces of artwork on this gallery.
Sandro Botticelli was the artist responsible for the drawings that were done for the Divine Comedy. He was mainly known to concentrate his efforts most on religious pieces and Greek mythology. There is a very obvious layering going on with the artwork here, with the juxtaposed color placement and sense of divided verticality.
Exploring some of the more down to earth styles of artwork in this gallery, we find the work of António Carneiro, a Portuguese painter who specialized in symbology and spiritualism. Depicted here is one of the more famous sections of the Divine Comedy. The line work is very rough, but highly detailed at the same time. The use of character height here is very emphasized as well.
Sandro Botticelli had created a collection of Madonnas to display the many influences that his master had on him. After that he was allowed to run his own shop. He was eventually called by Pope Sixtus IV to paint the murals on the newly refurbished Sistine Chapel. Many of these murals that Sandro had created usually dealt with religious symbolism.
In this illustration by Sandro Botticelli, we see several interesting figures portrayed within the image. Using highly detailed and easily traceable line work, each of the different characters in the crowd stick out and give the piece of art a bigger sense of scale. There is also a very unique blend of smooth and rigid lines.
The final piece of artwork in the gallery is by Jean-Jacques Feuchère, and depicts Dante, the leading character of the Divine Comedy, meditating on the whole affair. The line work is very smooth and graceful here. Jean-Jacques is able to draw a lot of attention toward Dante by making him the only red object in the image.
Credits: All media
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