Q1. What earlier artists or artwork may have influenced David in his representation of Marat in his painting Death of Marat(include the image)?
Does David rely on the viewer’s ability to associate this painting with other iconic works of art to convey his message? (100words)
Q2. Why did the “Founding Fathers” of the United States choose Neoclassicism as the national architectural style of the United States?
What ideals are conveyed, what symbolism is evoked through this style?
Please find an example of classically-inspired US architecture (other than the US Capitol) and include the image in your posting. (120words)
Q3. Respond to peer’s thought. (20words each)
Peer’s thought1: Davids Death of Marat was a tribute to his friend Marat who was assassinated after the Revolution. It depicted his friend as a martyr who died in service to the State. It utilized neoclassicism and gravitas to venerate what was dramatized by the media. Doing so made this work of art a great piece of propaganda for the cause of the Revolution on the side of the State. When I look at this painting, I get see glimpses of influences from other artists and specific works. One specific work that comes to mind is Artemisias Judith Slaying Holofernes. The most obvious comparison of the two is the strong use of tenebrism which is the dramatic use of contrasting dark-light effects in painting. That technique being developed by Caravaggio who of course was a great influence on Artemisia Gentileschi. The dramatic scene is also a common feature of the two. Both dealing with the subject of an assassination however differ in the fact that Marat was killed and in Artemisias her displays the assassination.
I do not think that David relied on the viewers ability to associate this painting with other iconic works to convey his message. While it did have strong influences from other works of the past as almost all art does, we can still make it our own. Without any knowledge of the previous works I believe the viewer can distinguish the point of the work as being dramatic to emphasize the importance of the message. The message being a propaganda of course for its time. The utilization of tenebrism really helps sell that seriousness.
Peer’s thought2: The Founding Fathers of the United States of America were influenced and inspired by the ideas of the Renaissance period along with the architectural work of architects like Giacomo da Vignola and Andrea Palladio. They were motivated by their uniform and orderly characteristics of Rome and Ancient Greece. Along with the concept of imperial Rome and the sovereignty for liberty that embodied everything that they desired for the Nation to establish.
Our Founding Fathers and American leaders chose to model Neoclassicism as the national architectural style of the United States because it exemplifies balance geometry, proportion, and symmetry. These characteristics symbolized the principles of justice and democracy established by these Ancients. The Supreme Court is an excellent example of Neoclassicism in United States architecture.
The Supreme Court is the nations third branch of government and was finished in 1935 by architect Cass Gilbert. Cass Gilbert was influenced by the Roman temple form as a basis for the building, along with an extensive flight of stairs and tall Corinthian columns. The entrance of this building is monumental and grand with lower wings that occupy the central temple and help unify it with the other lower scaled building of the Capitol Hill neighborhood.