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National Gallery

'Sea Star: Sean Scully at the National Gallery' is now in its final weeks in our Ground Floor Galleries.
In this exhibition you can see new work by Sean Scully inspired by our collection including 'Arles Abend Vincent' which is inspired by 'Van Gogh's Chair'. Scully first encountered this painting (then on display at @tate) when he was 19, shortly before becoming a student at Croydon College. For a few weeks he went to look at it every day. The painting was an important influence on his decision to become a painter.
#SeaStarSeanScully is sponsored by @BlainSouthern and Hiscox.

#seanscully #scully #abstract #painting #nationalgallery #nationalgallerylondon #instamuseum #vangogh


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National Gallery

'Sea Star: Sean Scully at the National Gallery' is now in its final weeks in our Ground Floor Galleries.
Sean Scully is one of the most admired abstract artists working today. His distinctive paintings are bulit up in broad patterns of stripes, both vertical and horizontal. Each work uses a limited range of colours that evoke mood and movement, permanence and impermanence.
The two paintings you can see here are part of a group of 4 called 'Human 3'. Each individual part featurees an inset panel taken from one of the other parts. These insets become like windows or doorways punched through the surface of the large paintings, revealing something that lies beyond, different and yet complementary to their setting. 'A window is a promise, like a doorway', Scully has said. 'A façade is not totally relentless because of the window and the door. That's what humanises the wall.' Photo © The National Gallery, London.
#seanscully #scully #abstract #painting #nationalgallery #seastarseanscully #nationalgallerylondon #instamuseum


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National Gallery

The acrobat Miss La La caused a sensation when she performed at the Cirque Fernando in Paris. Here she is shown suspended from the rafters of the circus dome by a rope clenched between her teeth.

Degas sought out such striking modern subjects, concentrating on figures in arresting poses. In January 1879 he made a series of drawings at the Cirque Fernando including a pastel study of Miss La La (now in @tate), which culminated in this painting. We view the spectacle as the audience would have done, gazing up at the daring feat taking place above.
Detail from Hilaire-Germain-Edgar Degas, 'Miss La La at the Cirque Fernando', 1879 © The National Gallery, London.
#degas #edgardegas #hilairegermainedgardegas #nationalgallery #nationalgallerylondon #combingthehair #painting #instamuseum


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National Gallery

Come along to the seaside and enjoy the cool yellows and blues of this 'Beach Scene' by Degas. Many scenes are being played out in front of us, most prominent is the maid combing the young girl's hair at the center. Will you be visiting the beach today?

This picture has been dated to about 1876-77 but it may have been painted as early as the late 1860s. It was exhibited at the third Impressionist exhibition in 1877. We're almost certain that the young girl and maid were posed in the studio, rather than painted in the open air.
Detail from Hilaire-Germain-Edgar Degas, 'Beach Scene', about 1869-70 © The National Gallery, London.
#degas #edgardegas #hilairegermainedgardegas #nationalgallery #nationalgallerylondon #beach #painting #instamuseum


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National Gallery

Hilaire-Germain-Edgar Degas was born #OnThisDay in 1834. He specialised in scenes of contemporary life, including dancers, entertainers and women at their toilette. His mastery of technique was superb, and he experimented with various media including pastel.
Here, Degas paints two women, one combing the other's hair. He limits his colour palette to just a few colours; reds, oranges and pinks. This is typical of his work from this later period of his life.
Come into Room 43 and you'll probably see its red glow before you spot the painting itself.
Detail from Hilaire-Germain-Edgar Degas, Combing the Hair ('La Coiffure'), about 1896 © The National Gallery, London.
#degas #edgardegas #hilairegermainedgardegas #nationalgallery #nationalgallerylondon #combingthehair #painting #instamuseum


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National Gallery

Arrogant, rebellious and a murderer, Caravaggio's short and tempestuous life matched the drama of his works. Characterised by their dramatic, almost theatrical lighting, Caravaggio's paintings were controversial, popular, and hugely influential on succeeding generations of painters all over Europe. He died #OnThisDay in 1610.
Here, a young boy recoils in pain as his finger is bitten by a lizard, hidden among the fruit. A magnificent still life stands between him and us. The glass vase holds a rose and a sprig of jasmine, while red, succulent cherries lie beside the vase. Note the reflection of a room painted in the curving contour of the glass. It's most unusual for a late 16th-century painting to show a figure so realistically in a moment of action, and for a still life to be so prominent.

The subject of this painting may have an allegorical meaning, and possibly refers to the pain that can derive from love.

Detail from Michelangelo Merisi da Caravaggio, 'Boy bitten by a Lizard',
about 1594-5 © The National Gallery, London.
#caravaggio #boybittenbyalizard #painting #nationalgallery #nationalgallerylondon


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National Gallery

Two of Jesus's disciples were walking to Emmaus after the Crucifixion when the resurrected Jesus himself drew near and went with them, but they did not recognise him. At supper that evening in Emmaus '... he took bread, and blessed it, and brake and gave to them. And their eyes were opened, and they knew him; and he vanished out of their sight' (Luke 24: 30-31). Christ is shown at the moment of blessing the bread and revealing his true identity to the two disciples.

Caravaggio's innovative treatment of the subject makes this one of his most powerful works. The depiction of Christ is unusual in that he is beardless and great emphasis is given to the still life on the table. The intensity of the emotions of Christ's disciples is conveyed by their gestures and expression. The viewer too is made to feel a participant in the event.

The picture was commissioned by the Roman nobleman Ciriaco Mattei in 1601. Caravaggio painted a second, more subdued version of 'The Supper at Emmaus' about five years after this work.

Detail from Michelangelo Merisi da Caravaggio, 'The Supper at Emmaus', 1601 © The National Gallery, London.
#caravaggio #supperatemmaus #nationalgallery #nationalgallerylondon #painting


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National Gallery

Arrogant, rebellious and a murderer, Caravaggio's short and tempestuous life matched the drama of his works. Characterised by their dramatic, almost theatrical lighting, Caravaggio's paintings were controversial, popular, and hugely influential on succeeding generations of painters all over Europe.

The subject of this particular work is from the New Testament (Mark 6). Salome had danced so well for King Herod that he swore he would grant her any request. Her mother, Herodias, who sought revenge on John the Baptist, persuaded Salome to ask for his head.

This is a late work by the artist, probably painted at the end of his life, perhaps in Naples where he lived from 1609 to 1610. No longer concerned with the incidentals of the narrative, Caravaggio focuses on the essential human tragedy of the story.

Detail from Michelangelo Merisi da Caravaggio, 'Salome receives the Head of John the Baptist', about 1609-10 © The National Gallery, London.
#caravaggio #salome #johnthebaptist #nationalgallery #nationalgallerylondon #instamuseum


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National Gallery

Rembrandt was born #OnThisDay in 1606. He painted more self portraits than any other 17th century artist and we have two of them in our collection. One was painted when Rembrandt was 34 and the other was this one, which was painted in the last year of his life.

Compare this self portrait to the painting we posted on our feed a few days ago of Rembrandt at 34. What differences do you notice? What is similar?
In this late picture, the artist wears a deep red coat and a beret, his hands clasped before him. The viewer is confronted by his steady gaze. Rembrandt painted and etched self portraits throughout his life, but those executed in his final years, in which he presents himself in a reflective mood, are among the most poignant and challenging.

The painting was cleaned in 1967, revealing the damaged signature and date. The X-ray of the picture reveals two alterations to the design. First, a change in the size and colour of the beret, which was originally much larger and all white. Secondly, the original position of the hands was open and he was holding a paintbrush. Repainting the hands clasped and without the brush reduces their dramatic impact and draws attention back to the face. You can see both of our self portraits by Rembrandt in Room 22.
Detail from Rembrandt, 'Self Portrait at the Age of 63', 1669 © The National Gallery, London.
#rembrandt #selfportrait #portrait #painting #nationalgallery #nationalgallerylondon


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National Gallery

This work was painted by Rembrandt in 1654. The model is probably Hendrickje Stoffels. She lived in Rembrandt's household from about 1649 until her death. She became his common-law wife and bore him a daughter, Cornelia, who was baptised on 30 October 1654 (the year of this painting). It has been suggested that the sumptuous red robe on the river bank indicates that the painting might be a sketch for a religious or mythological picture; the model might be in the guise of an Old Testament heroine, such as Susanna or Bathsheba, or the goddess Diana, who were all spied upon by men while bathing. However, there is no evidence for a completed painting after this work and Rembrandt did not use oil sketches as preparation for larger-scale paintings.

The picture appears unfinished in some parts, for example, in the shadow at the hem of the raised chemise, the right arm and the left shoulder, but it was clearly finished to Rembrandt's satisfaction since he signed and dated it.

Detail from Rembrandt, 'A Woman bathing in a Stream (Hendrickje Stoffels?)', 1654 © The National Gallery, London.
#rembrandt #woman #hendrickje #painting #nationalgallery #nationalgallerylondon


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National Gallery

Rembrandt painted more self portraits than any other 17th century artist and we have two of them in our collection. This is one of them, when Rembrandt was 34 and at the height of his career.
Look at the hat and coat he is wearing. This is actually an elaborate costume in the fashion of the previous century. By painting himself in these clothes, he is now dressed as his famous predecessors and, in doing so, he seems to be deliberately placing himself among the great 'Old Masters'. Come and have a look at this bold self portrait in Room 22.
Detail from Rembrandt, 'Self Portrait at the Age of 34', 1640 © The National Gallery, London.
#rembrandt #selfportrait #oldmaster #portrait #nationalgallery #nationalgallerylondon #instamuseum


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National Gallery

Hello! We're the National Gallery's Young Producers and tonight we'll be taking over the Gallery tonight with a Late focused on the art in craft. Throughout the night, we'll be bringing crafts to life through a series of free workshops, talks and performances, including a workshop focused on fan making.
Fans were once a pinnacle of fashion, with some of the most luxurious being made using ivory, tortoiseshell and mother of pearl. Some were also decorated with gold, silver and gems. Here, Madame Moitessier, the wife of a wealthy banker, poses with a fan in her left hand.

Now, fan making is considered a ‘Critically Endangered Craft’ due to them gradually going out of fashion. This means that it is at serious risk of no longer being practised in the UK.

Come along from 6pm tonight. Click the link in our bio or click the #NGLates highlight on our profile to find out more.
See you there!

#fridaylate #freeevent #freeworkshop #freetalks #freetalk #event #nglate #ngyoungproducers #nationalgallery #nationalgallerylondon


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