Love Me or Hate Me - Ares, The Greek God of War (aka Mars, The Roman God of War) - Theresa Romero

This gallery includes painting and sculptures representing the greek God Ares: The God of War, aka the roman God Mars. The most disliked Greek God yet second most important Roman God. Both the same person, yet very different personalities. 

War Habit Of Romans, 1824, From the collection of: LIFE Photo Collection
The Greek Gods were known for their physical beauty where their muscles, eyes and hair enhanced their overall look and Ares was no exception. Known for his spear, shield and helmet, Ares was the God of War. In this piece of art, Ares is the center of attention. His chariot awaits him as you see the dog, another symbol of Ares, running around beneath him. You can see the strength of Ares depicted in this artwork as the wind creates a sense of softness as the wind blows through his hair.
Myt. Clas. Mars. (Ares) & Rhea., From the collection of: LIFE Photo Collection
The Roman Gods were considered the counterpart of the Greek Gods. They were named after objects with no real physical appearance as the Greek Gods were named after personality traits and overall look. Here you see Mars, based on the Greek God Ares, with helmet and beautiful linens draped over him as you can make out the physical beauty underneath it all. The detail in the armor as well as in the muscle definition is presented well.
Venus and Mars, Richard Cosway, 1742–1821, British, ca. 1790, From the collection of: Yale Center for British Art
Ares, not always a warrior, was a lover as well. He was known for being the lover of Aphrodite aka Venus, shown with him here, who was married to Hephaestus aka Vulcan, the God of Fire. Seen here with his shield on the ground, Ares is embracing Aphrodite. This artist for this piece used brown ink on a cream colored paper. There is great detail the artist gave of their bodies and the shadowing of their bodies underneath the linen. The lines are sharp with a gentle feel to them.
Mars and Venus Surprised by Vulcan, Joachim Anthonisz. Wtewael, about 1606 - 1610, From the collection of: The J. Paul Getty Museum
The artist here depicts the famous love story of Ares and Aphrodite being exposed by her husband, Hephaestus. The artist clearly shows the humiliation through their expressions as well as the laughter by others around them when caught. Eros, aka Cupid, was a child of Ares and Aphrodite and is shown above them with Apollo. The artist used vibrant colors as dramatic poses, which gives the audience the sense of surprise and unexpected ridicule.
Venus and Mars Surprised by Vulcan, Hendrick Goltzius, 1585, From the collection of: The J. Paul Getty Museum
The artist of this piece depicts the same love story but with a little variation to the previous one. Here you see Vulcan pulling off the net that he had designed to catch his adulteress wife and her lover Mars. Inviting other gods, seen above the two lovers, to join in the humiliation of Mars. In this piece, Cupid is down below and Vulcan forging in the background. This being a drawing, you still get the detail as you did in the previous piece but not as much of the drama or embarrassment that you get with the color. The lines well define the bodies and linen in the artwork.
Mars and Venus Surprised by Vulcan, Guillemot, Alexandre Charles, 1827, From the collection of: Indianapolis Museum of Art at Newfields
Another artist’s interpretation of Vulcan catching his wife Venus with Mars. From the dramatic expressions on each of their faces, to the subtle positioning of their bodies, the artist captures the audience’s attention. Seeing the other God’s above, out of focus and without much detail, the main focus is on Mars, Venus and Vulcan. As the netting, created by Vulcan to catch his wife with Mars, is pulled over, the light exposes Venus with Mars. You can see the detail in Venus trying to cover her face from Vulcan with her hair as he stairs at her with disgust and Mars showing no guilt.
Mars and Venus, Antonio Canova, 1817 - 1822, From the collection of: Royal Collection Trust, UK
This statue of Venus looking up at Mars shows the love she has for him. Attracted to his beauty, not only in his face and hair but that of his body, Venus could not resist Mars. As the artist depicted them, gazing into each other’s eyes, you can sense the love they have. Venus has her head tilted back as she looks up to Mars. Their arms embracing one another as their eyes meet. The artist displays Mars as being strong and irresistibly handsome, holding his spear and wearing his helmet, yet with a sense of being vain. His body is facing outward as if he is on display.
Mars & Venus, Allegory of Peace, Louis Jean François Lagrenée (French, 1725 - 1805), 1770, From the collection of: The J. Paul Getty Museum
Waking up to the morning sunlight, Mars gazes down on Venus, the Roman goddess of love. He pulls back the luscious green curtain; he cannot keep his eyes off of her. Doves, a symbol of peace, start their nest in the helmet belonging to Mars, abandon on the floor next to his sword and shield. Venus’ love has softened Mars’ brutal personality. The rich, vibrant color of the drapery, the soft skin tones as light brightens the foreground and the extravagant detail in both combine for an alluring image.
Myt. Clas. Mars. (Ares) & Rhea., From the collection of: LIFE Photo Collection
This sculpture of Ares, the Greek God of War, with his sword on the left and shield on his right, he sits only draped in linen. The greek gods known for their beauty show Ares as a youthful young man. Strong and confident he sits with no armor, only linen. From his chest down to his calves the muscles are defined as his knee is propped up so his hands can rest on them.
Mars with Cupid, Giovanni Francesco Barbieri (Guercino) (Italian, b.1591, d.1666), 1649, From the collection of: Cincinnati Art Museum
This piece of art with Mars and Cupid was a commissioned piece along with Venus and Cupid, now lost, around the beginning of the seventeenth century. This Italian Baroque uses of incandescent colors combined with an intense, real-to-life feel to the images. The background somewhat out of focus draws your attention to Mars and makes him the center of attention. From the detail of the feathers to the helmet, you can almost feel he softness of the feathers and the strength of the helmet as the light shines in from the left, illuminating Mars. The detail in the shading of the body and the intensity of his stare draws you into the painting.
Mars on his Chariot Pulled by Wolves, Claude II Audran, 1673, From the collection of: Palace of Versailles
Ares in his gold chariot pulled by vicious looking wolves across the sky as you see the light shine down on him from the heavens. There are people below him, lurking in his shadows, hiding beneath miscellaneous armor and shields as if to be in fear. The armor shows great detail, oppose to Ares himself, as if it were to fall out of the painting.
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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