Friday, October 18, 2013

Illustrations in Literature

After researching art pieces for our Dante presentation, I found that I really liked Gustave Doré's work. So I thought I'd share a few of the pieces (unrelated to Dante's Inferno) that captured my interest. 

So a little background info. 
Born in 1832, Paul Gustave Doré is a renowned French artist, engraver, illustrator, and sculptor. He published his first illustrated story at the age of fifteen. From then on, he worked on commissions to depict scenes of famous novels, such as Ravelais, Balzac, Milton, and Dante. 

Some of his most famous works:
Jacob wrestling with the Angel (1855) (weeping angel?)

Depiction of Satan (from Paradise Lost, 1866)

Don Quixote (one of my personal favorites)

Little Red Riding Hood

Death on the Pale Horse (Bible illustration)


Doré's illustrations are by far the most fluid and mystical I have ever seen. You can practically feel the movement in each - especially in Andromeda, with the waves crashing around her legs, as she attempts to escape from her bonds. In the illustration of Satan, you can see he's wearing a "traditional" angel's garb, but his wings have become blackened by his fall, and small horns have sprouted upon his head. His expression is almost one of wistfulness, perhaps of his longing to return to Heaven and continue his undying love for God. The illustration of Don Quixote, though, is probably my favorite. He's sits in his chair, full of pride over his endeavors, while his imagination fills the background. As I am one to daydream of a more courageous and imaginative alter-ego of myself, I can most definitely relate to him - just maybe not as schizophrenic or deluded. 

1 comment:

Joseph D'Amico said...

Those are some nice pictures. I really like the one of Satan. Doré really does a great job with the small details, especially in the background of Don Quixote and the waves in Andromeda.