Romanticizing the Brute

Portraying warriors throughout history, each piece demonstrates the evolution of the manner in which an era's warriors have been viewed, romanticized, and depicted.

This ancient work demonstrates the manner in which the warriors of Greece were glorified. The beasts frame the hero Bellerophon, ensuring that the eye is drawn to his valor and glorious victory.
Not unlike the previous work, this portrait of Hercules uses the line of his club and the hydra whom he fights to frame and draw focus to the hero. The use of light further focuses the eye.
Depicting Tlahuicole in proportions one could call Herculean, it is difficult to notice the chain at his ankle. His death is thus romanticized, and his bravery is depicted as greater than his bondage.
Contrary to previous examples in this gallery, this work depicts Romulus as a more ordinary man. The scene uses light and contrast in color to romanticize the deed of Romulus rather than his person.
This portrait offers elements that one tends to see most in more modern depictions of soldiers. His expression is pensive, and his eyes are touched by troubles. Yet he poses bravely, girded for war.
The lighting in this Russian image is bleak and the posture of the lance and the knight's gaze draw attention to the grave. The romantic image of the knight remains, however, as he rides on dutifully.
Lacking shading, this print uses the lines of the background and the men on foot as borders to draw attention to the Samurai, and exaggerated features to express the figure's heroic determination.
Not just glorifying the clash of warriors, this print shows the struggle of old ways and new. Both key figures are in balance to one another, almost framed within a yin yang symbol as they battle.
Here, even the greatest of soldiers is shown finding honor in the rising sun, the symbol of Japan. This image thus illustrates the more modern influence of imperialism in the depiction of warriors.
Using the famous flag raising on Iwo Jima, this portrait shows soldiers under the American flag. Common to warrior depictions of the 20th century, it romanticizes fighting together for one's country.
This photo shows the turn from the romantic notions of warrior culture. The soldiers face is illuminated and framed by his position, drawing attention to the fear and and anxiety in his expression.
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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