The Surprising Stories of Famous Paintings
The art world is a vast sea with various movements, talented artists and unique works. It is a world where various emotions and various thoughts come together. Whoever looks at a painting, it is inevitable that the painting will make that person think or feel something. This situation can be caused by the conscious action of the artist as well as by the story behind the painting. Famous paintings may not always have surprising stories, but you can find some paintings with stories that left their mark on the art world in this article. Happy reading!
1- Portrait of Dr. Gachet
Vincent Van Gogh is the painter of many world-famous paintings. One of the last paintings he made before he died, “Dr. Gachet’s Portrait” is one of them. After his days in a mental hospital, Van Gogh was referred to Dr. Gachet, an admirer of Van Gogh, to be kept under surveillance. Of course, as an artist, Van Gogh also observed the doctor. In his first thoughts, he said that the doctor was sicker than he was. Later, he changed his mind and said “I have found a true friend in Dr. Gachet, something like another brother, so much do we resemble each other physically and also mentally. ” Van Gogh was influenced by his doctor over time. When he finished the portrait, he said “I painted Gachet’s portrait with a melancholy expression.” His words are also included in his letters.
2- The Scream
One of the most expensive paintings in history, “The Scream” is Edvard Munch’s best-known work. How the work emerged in the artist’s imagination is described in his diary. While walking around the city one evening, Munch stopped for a moment and looked up at the sky. What he saw were the blood-red setting sun and clouds. According to what he wrote, his situation made him feel an “endless scream going through nature”. This prompted him to paint The Scream using the blood-red clouds he had experienced that evening. This is not the only reason for the painting’s fame. It is also said by some to describe mental problems. The painting has been stolen twice before. Fortunately, the originals have been found again.
3- Last Supper
The Last Supper is located within the walls of the Convent of Santa Maria della Grazie in Milan. The fresco, thought to have been completed in 1498, is part of a restoration work. The person who painted Last Supper is none other than Leonardo Da Vinci. The painting describes the last meal that Jesus had with his apostles before he was crucified. It describes the different reactions and expressions the apostles gave when Jesus said that one of them would be betrayed. It is said that Da Vinci worked with real models for the appearance of each apostle. He even visited the prisons of Milan to find the person best suited to the face of Jesus.
Pablo Picasso, one of the famous names who left his mark on the art world in the last century, is also one of the owners of the paintings with stories that surprise us. The work of the artist, who laid the foundations of the cubism movement, is “Guernica”. Considered one of Picasso’s best works, the painting depicts the horrors of Guernica bombed by Nazi Germany’s warplanes. The painting, painted at the request of the Spanish government, has been exhibited at the World Art Fair and in various countries. Thus, attention was drawn to the tragedy and events in Spain. Guernica, which also has a political side, has become a work that reminds the destruction of the war and symbolizes the opposition to war.
5- Whistler’s Mother
The painting by American-born James Abbott McNeill Whistler was completed in 1871. The frame of Whistler’s painting of his own mother was also designed by the artist. It exhibits in the Orsay Museum in Paris. There are many stories about the painting. The most well-known is that the model he was going to paint did not come and then James’ mother posed for the painting. James planned to paint a standing model, but when his mother became the model, he chose to give her a relaxing pose. This change was a lucky one because the painting is one of the most famous paintings ever made by American artists. It is also known as the “Victorian Mona Lisa”.
6- Three Girls
The Three Girls painting is a work of Amrita Sher-Gil, known as the Frida Kahlo of India. The artwork, painted in 1935, is Sher-Gil’s first piece after her return from Europe. The focus of the work is three girls, depicting family members who come to meet the artist when she visits her family for the holidays. Sher-Gil was fascinated by the charm of the girls’ innocence. She described the feeling of not having a voice in the future of these women with their facial expressions and body language. She describes her decision to paint them as follows: “I realized that my true artistic task is to paint silent images of endless surrender and patience, to reflect the impression of their sad eyes.”
7- The Persistence of Memory
Famous painter Dali, who left his mark on the art world with his innovative ideas, may be one of the first names that come to mind when it comes to the surprising stories of paintings. One of the most well-known works of Surrealism, “The Persistence of Memory” is also his best known work. The melting clocks in the painting were attributed by some to Einstein’s Theory of Relativity. But Dali refused. He said the inspiration for the central motif was a piece of cheese melting in the sun. The neutral form in the foreground is a dreamlike representation of the artist himself. He was influenced by Freud. Ants on pocket watches are a symbol of decay. The work depicts the loss of meaning of time with these elements.
8- The Son of Man
The surrealist self-portrait of Belgian-born artist René Magritte is a work known even to those who do not know the artist. He is known as an intelligent and capricious person. Apple and bowler hat figures, which Magritte likes to use, also appear in this work. At first glance you see that a modern man is depicted. Some people associate it with the name of the painting and see it as a surrealist depiction of the metamorphosis of Jesus. Magritte said, “This is something that happens all the time. Everything we see hides something else, we always want to see what is hidden from us. There is an interest in the hidden but not in the unseen.”
9- Starry Night
At the end of the list is another famous work by Van Gogh, known for popular culture, Starry Nights. Vincent created this colorful and bright work inspired by the night view he saw through the window in the mental hospital. After strenuous mental challenges, he produced this work. It is known that Van Gogh did not like this work very much. He mentioned this in his letters, but unfortunately did not say why. It was later realized that the bright star you see in the work is actually Venus. The cypress trees you see represent death. These trees are trying to convey the message that only death can take us to the stars.