The color of drama
An exploration in how color heightens emotion in art.
In this first piece by artist El Greco the dramatic struggle is set in darker tones contrasted by the brightly colored city and bright sky above highlighting the action below.
Raphael's beautiful use of bright lively and cool color creates a warm and loving feel to this portrait. The colors invite us all to come sit with them in the country side.
In this piece white is set apart by darker white, but also uses a rich blue to thrust the gazing woman into our conversation making this a friendly and engaging scene.
The rich and vibrant colors of this scene add to the joyous nature of the occasion and draw our eyes towards the center of the action.
This happy little girl and her watering can is brought to life with beautiful blue and green colors which contrast softly with her light features. Her bow adding a pop of energy to the scene.
So much of the color in this dramatic scene is literal. Dark entities and demons, light colored sickly man and reaper figure, white angel, and man in green with money all tell their individual story.
Poor Daniel in a den of majestically colored lions whose hunger is highlighted with dark shading. He prays in the light while his red cape adds a spark of danger to the scene.
I can imagine the reds in this piece being much more dominant in its prime. Swirling power in a devastating and sensual storm unleashed on this woman bathed in light.
Death swirls around the survivors in this piece with the colors sucking us into the despair of the scene. Dark yet in a way serene, a depressing peacefulness rests in the skyline.
The colors in this piece capture the hard life written on the young girls face. Swirling grey smoke, dark ash, and burning red fires. A full range of emotion laid out in one painting.
The drama in this piece is obvious. The glowing angel in pastels defeating his crimson encased foes. Light versus dark brings this conflict to life.
Again here the heroes of the story are bathed in light and bright colors. The woman and child in innocent blues and white, the courageous hero in brightly lit red. The vile foes in darkened tones.
A party with the gods must always be bathed in light colors! The whites, pinks, blues, and golds dance around with our party gusts in a lively display of merriment.
Another literal piece with demons and the damned in darker shades conveying their torturous existence contrasted with the royal purple and green of our observer.
It's a lovely night for a bonfire. A bright moon shines through dark blue clouds and the night is alive with dancing red and orange fire while smiling folks in spring colors look on with delight.
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.
Kunsthistorisches Museum Wien
Ateneum Art Museum
Kupferstichkabinett, Staatliche Museen zu Berlin
The Jewish Museum, New York
Australian War Memorial
Gemäldegalerie, Staatliche Museen zu Berlin
National Gallery of Art, Washington DC
Translate with Google