Tuesday, 9 February 2016

The Rocky Mountains - Albert Bierstadt

I have chosen this painting by Albert Bierstadt, it is titled The Rocky Mountains and was painted in 1866. It encapsulates a lot of the key aspects and themes that were associated with art of that period. It depicts Western America as a place which is particularly beautiful and spectacular.

This image strongly conveys an idea of the sublime. Through the way that the forest in the foreground is shown as particularly wild and destructive, as indicated by the fallen trees. However the main aspect of the sublime is shown through the scale of the mountains how they seem to go on forever. The way in which the top of the mountain disappears into the cloud is especially effective in conveying the size of these mountains as shows them as being particularly sublime, the turbulent sky is also very effective at continuing the idea of the sublime in this painting. The use of mist also gives the landscape an aspect of wilderness and mystery as the viewer is unsure as to what the mist could by hiding. The inclusion of the deer in the painting's foreground as links the landscape to nature and ideas of the wilderness, although they also help to convey the grand size of the mountains that dominate the painting.

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