Götz Kluge

Götz Kluge

Posted on 06/01/2013

Photo taken on June  1, 2013

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The Bard
John Martin

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John Martin - The Bard

John Martin - The Bard
recto, unframed

John Martin: The Bard


John Martin: The Bard
ca. 1817

Yale Center for British Art, Paul Mellon Collection
"Based on a Thomas Gray poem, inspired by a Welsh tradition that said that Edward I had put to death any bards he found, to extinguish Welsh culture; the poem depicts the escape of a single bard.

In mydailyartdisplay.wordpress.com/the-bard-by-john-martin, "Jonathan" connects the painting to the poem The Bard written by by Thomas Gray in 1755:
· · ...
· · On a rock, whose haughty brow
· · Frowns o'er cold Conway's foaming flood,
· · Robed in the sable garb of woe
· · With haggard eyes the Poet stood;
· · ...
· · "Enough for me: with joy I see
· · The diff'rent doom our fates assign.
· · Be thine Despair and sceptred Care;
· · To triumph and to die are mine."
· · He spoke, and headlong from the mountain's height
· · Deep in the roaring tide he plunged to endless night.
· · ...

The poem and the painting may have been an inspiration to Lewis Carroll and Henry Holiday in The Hunting of the Snark:
· · 545· · Erect and sublime, for one moment of time.
· · 546· · · · In the next, that wild figure they saw
· · 547· · (As if stung by a spasm) plunge into a chasm,
· · 548· · · · While they waited and listened in awe.


See also: Henry Holiday's Snark illustrations and John Martin's "The Bard":
- www.academia.edu/9885417/The_Bellman_and_the_Bard
- www.academia.edu/9923718/Henry_Holidays_Monsterspotting
- www.academia.edu/10251338/Monsters_and_Monstrances
- www.academia.edu/12586460/The_Bard_the_Baker_and_the_Butcher

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8 comments - The latest ones
Götz Kluge
Götz Kluge
Bellman & Bard
5 years ago. Edited 5 years ago.
Götz Kluge
Götz Kluge
Thank you. Here is another view:
Herbs & Horses
4 years ago.
a fabulous painting, and a fascinating study !!
4 years ago.
Götz Kluge
Götz Kluge
In www.socialhistoryofart.com/19thCentury/Baldwin%20Mountain%20Sublime%20and%20Bards%20from%20Thomas%20Gray%20to%20John%20Martin.doc Robert Baldwin (2010-10-23, Associate Professor of Art History, Connecticut College) wrote "Ignoring the Welsh highlands, Martin clearly modeled his landscape on the Swiss Alps which had recently emerged as a major destination for English travelers thanks to the Romantic Alpine poems of [Percy Bysshe] Byron and [Percy Bysshe] Shelley, among others, and the Alpine landscapes of [Joseph Anton] Koch and [Joseph M.W.] Turner. Spurning the tranquil and majestic "Alpine sublime" developed by Koch, Martin took the more dramatic Alpine compositions of Turner and transformed them with his own, quasi-Apocalyptic fervor. In so doing, he gave Alpine landscape the emotional turmoil found in [William] Blake and Byron. And in all this, he took [Thomas] Gray's Bard into completely new territory, leaving behind all traces of eighteenth-century restraint, decorum, reason, and quiet morality."
4 years ago. Edited 4 years ago.
Götz Kluge
Götz Kluge
4 years ago. Edited 3 years ago.