landscape painting


  • [8] However, in the West, history painting came to require an extensive landscape background where appropriate, so the theory did not entirely work against the development
    of landscape painting – for several centuries landscapes were regularly promoted to the status of history painting by the addition of small figures to make a narrative scene, typically religious or mythological.

  • After the publication of the Small Landscapes, landscape artists in the Low Countries either continued with the world landscape or followed the new mode presented by the Small

  • [5] History The earliest forms of art around the world depict little that could really be called landscape, although ground-lines and sometimes indications of mountains, trees
    or other natural features are included.

  • [17] The publication in Antwerp in 1559 and 1561 of two series of a total of 48 prints (the Small Landscapes) after drawings by an anonymous artist referred to as the Master
    of the Small Landscapes signaled a shift away from the imaginary, distant landscapes with religious content of the world landscape towards close-up renderings at eye-level of identifiable country estates and villages populated with figures
    engaged in daily activities.

  • Japan See also: List of National Treasures of Japan (paintings) Japanese art initially adapted Chinese styles to reflect their interest in narrative themes in art, with scenes
    set in landscapes mixing with those showing palace or city scenes using the same high view point, cutting away roofs as necessary.

  • The 18th century was also a great age for the topographical print, depicting more or less accurately a real view in a way that landscape painting rarely did.

  • 156.8 × 356 cm (61.73 × 140.16 in) The Chinese ink painting tradition of shan shui (“mountain-water”), or “pure” landscape, in which the only sign of human life is usually
    a sage, or a glimpse of his hut, uses sophisticated landscape backgrounds to figure subjects, and landscape art of this period retains a classic and much-imitated status within the Chinese tradition.

  • [20] Dutch Golden Age painting of the 17th century saw the dramatic growth of landscape painting, in which many artists specialized, and the development of extremely subtle
    realist techniques for depicting light and weather.

  • In other works, landscape backgrounds for figures can still form an important part of the work.

  • Western tradition Medieval In early Western medieval art interest in landscape disappears almost entirely, kept alive only in copies of Late Antique works such as the Utrecht
    Psalter; the last reworking of this source, in an early Gothic version, reduces the previously extensive landscapes to a few trees filling gaps in the composition, with no sense of overall space.

  • Dürer’s finished works seem generally to use invented landscapes, although the spectacular bird’s-eye view in his engraving Nemesis shows an actual view in the Alps, with
    additional elements.

  • Unlike their Dutch contemporaries, Italian and French landscape artists still most often wanted to keep their classification within the hierarchy of genres as history painting
    by including small figures to represent a scene from classical mythology or the Bible.

  • The Romantic movement intensified the existing interest in landscape art, and remote and wild landscapes, which had been one recurring element in earlier landscape art, now
    became more prominent.

  • The topographical print, often intended to be framed and hung on a wall, remained a very popular medium into the 20th century, but was often classed as a lower form of art
    than an imagined landscape.

  • [1] Such views, extremely common as prints in the West, are often seen as inferior to fine art landscapes, although the distinction is not always meaningful; similar prejudices
    existed in Chinese art, where literati painting usually depicted imaginary views, while professional artists painted real views.

  • [42] There are increasingly sophisticated landscape backgrounds to figure subjects showing hunting, farming or animals from the Han dynasty onwards, with surviving examples
    mostly in stone or clay reliefs from tombs, which are presumed to follow the prevailing styles in painting, no doubt without capturing the full effect of the original paintings.

  • By the beginning of the 19th century the English artists with the highest modern reputations were mostly dedicated landscape painters, showing the wide range of Romantic interpretations
    of the English landscape found in the works of John Constable, J.M.W.

  • Chinese gardens also developed a highly sophisticated aesthetic much earlier than those in the West; the karensansui or Japanese dry garden of Zen Buddhism takes the garden
    even closer to being a work of sculpture, representing a highly abstracted landscape.

  • Relatively little space is given to the sky in early works in either tradition; the Chinese often used mist or clouds between mountains, and also sometimes show clouds in
    the sky far earlier than Western artists, who initially mainly use clouds as supports or covers for divine figures or heaven.

  • However all these had difficulty establishing themselves in the contemporary art market, which still preferred history paintings and portraits.

  • Landscapes were idealized, mostly reflecting a pastoral ideal drawn from classical poetry which was first fully expressed by Giorgione and the young Titian, and remained associated
    above all with hilly wooded Italian landscape, which was depicted by artists from Northern Europe who had never visited Italy, just as plain-dwelling literati in China and Japan painted vertiginous mountains.

  • [28] In Europe, as John Ruskin said,[29] and Sir Kenneth Clark confirmed, landscape painting was the “chief artistic creation of the nineteenth century”, and “the dominant
    art”, with the result that in the following period people were “apt to assume that the appreciation of natural beauty and the painting of landscape is a normal and enduring part of our spiritual activity”[30] In Clark’s analysis, underlying
    European ways to convert the complexity of landscape to an idea were four fundamental approaches: the acceptance of descriptive symbols, a curiosity about the facts of nature, the creation of fantasy to allay deep-rooted fears of nature, and
    the belief in a Golden Age of harmony and order, which might be retrieved.

  • Initially these were mostly centred on a building, but over the course of the century, with the growth of the Romantic movement pure landscapes became more common.

  • [16] At the same time Joachim Patinir in the Netherlands developed the “world landscape” a style of panoramic landscape with small figures and using a high aerial viewpoint,
    that remained influential for a century, being used and perfected by Pieter Brueghel the Elder.

  • [12] Early in the 15th century, landscape painting was established as a genre in Europe, as a setting for human activity, often expressed in a religious subject, such as the
    themes of the Rest on the Flight into Egypt, the Journey of the Magi, or Saint Jerome in the Desert.

  • [53] Many more pure landscape subjects survive from the 15th century onwards; several key artists are Zen Buddhist clergy, and worked in a monochrome style with greater emphasis
    on brush strokes in the Chinese manner.

  • Compositional formulae using elements like the repoussoir were evolved which remain influential in modern photography and painting, notably by Poussin[19] and Claude Lorrain,
    both French artists living in 17th century Rome and painting largely classical subject-matter, or Biblical scenes set in the same landscapes.

  • For a coherent depiction of a whole landscape, some rough system of perspective, or scaling for distance, is needed, and this seems from literary evidence to have first been
    developed in Ancient Greece in the Hellenistic period, although no large-scale examples survive.

  • This shows the entourage riding through vertiginous mountains of the type typical of later paintings, but is in full colour “producing an overall pattern that is almost Persian”,
    in what was evidently a popular and fashionable court style.

  • A major contrast between landscape painting in the West and East Asia has been that while in the West until the 19th century it occupied a low position in the accepted hierarchy
    of genres, in East Asia the classic Chinese mountain-water ink painting was traditionally the most prestigious form of visual art.

  • Two main traditions spring from Western painting and Chinese art, going back well over a thousand years in both cases.

  • The frescos of figures at work or play in front of a background of dense trees in the Palace of the Popes, Avignon are probably a unique survival of what was a common subject.

  • [44] The decisive shift to a monochrome landscape style, almost devoid of figures, is attributed to Wang Wei (699-759), also famous as a poet; mostly only copies of his works

  • [45] From the 10th century onwards an increasing number of original paintings survive, and the best works of the Song Dynasty (960–1279) Southern School remain among the most
    highly regarded in what has been an uninterrupted tradition to the present day.

  • Though often young artists were encouraged to visit Italy to experience Italian light, many Northern European artists could make their living selling Italianate landscapes
    without ever bothering to make the trip.

  • The nationalism of the new United Provinces had been a factor in the popularity of Dutch 17th-century landscape painting and in the 19th century, as other nations attempted
    to develop distinctive national schools of painting, the attempt to express the special nature of the landscape of the homeland became a general tendency.

  • A particular advance is shown in the less well-known Turin-Milan Hours, now largely destroyed by fire, whose developments were reflected in Early Netherlandish painting for
    the rest of the century.

  • Other painters who never crossed the Alps could make money selling Rhineland landscapes, and still others for constructing fantasy scenes for a particular commission such
    as Cornelis de Man’s view of Smeerenburg in 1639.

  • [6] Hunting scenes, especially those set in the enclosed vista of the reed beds of the Nile Delta from Ancient Egypt, can give a strong sense of place, but the emphasis is
    on individual plant forms and human and animal figures rather than the overall landscape setting.

  • Luxury illuminated manuscripts were very important in the early development of landscape, especially series of the Labours of the Months such as those in the Très Riches Heures
    du Duc de Berry, which conventionally showed small genre figures in increasingly large landscape settings.

  • [41] William Watson notes that “It has been said that the role of landscape art in Chinese painting corresponds to that of the nude in the west, as a theme unvarying in itself,
    but made the vehicle of infinite nuances of vision and feeling”.

  • [3] Within a few decades it was used to describe vistas in poetry,[4] and eventually as a term for real views.

  • Watercolour in the English tradition, John Robert Cozens, Lake of Vico Between Rome and Florence, c. 1783 In the 18th century, watercolour painting, mostly of landscapes,
    became an English specialty, with both a buoyant market for professional works, and a large number of amateur painters, many following the popular systems found in the books of Alexander Cozens and others.

  • Some of the later Hudson River School artists, such as Albert Bierstadt, created less comforting works that placed a greater emphasis (with a great deal of Romantic exaggeration)
    on the raw, even terrifying power of nature.

  • • Vedute is the Italian term for view, and generally used for the painted landscape, often cityscapes which were a common 18th-century painting thematic.

  • A curtain of mountains at the back of the landscape is standard in wide Roman views and even more so in Chinese landscapes.

  • [59] The landscape studies by Dürer clearly represent actual scenes, which can be identified in many cases, and were at least partly made on the spot; the drawings by Fra
    Bartolomeo also seem clearly sketched from nature.

  • French painters were slower to develop landscape painting, but from about the 1830s Jean-Baptiste-Camille Corot and other painters in the Barbizon School established a French
    landscape tradition that would become the most influential in Europe for a century, with the Impressionists and Post-Impressionists for the first time making landscape painting the main source of general stylistic innovation across all types
    of painting.

  • Several landscapists are known to have made drawings and watercolour sketches from nature, but the evidence for early oil painting being done outside is limited.

  • The particular convention of the elevated viewpoint that developed in the tradition fills most of the vertical format picture spaces with the landscape, though clouds are
    also typically shown in the sky, shown in a curling convention drawn from Chinese art.

  • [14] Renaissance[edit] Pieter Brueghel the Elder, The Harvesters, 1565: Peace and agriculture in a pre-Romantic ideal landscape, without sublime terrors Landscape backgrounds
    for various types of painting became increasingly prominent and skillful during the 15th century.

  • By abandoning the panoramic viewpoint of the world landscape and focusing on the humble, rural and even topographical, the Small Landscapes set the stage for Netherlandish
    landscape painting in the 17th century.

  • [54] Persia and India Though there are some landscape elements in earlier art, the landscape tradition of the Persian miniature really begins in the Ilkhanid period, largely
    under Chinese influence.

  • [18] 17th and 18th centuries The popularity of exotic landscape scenes can be seen in the success of the painter Frans Post, who spent the rest of his life painting Brazilian
    landscapes after a trip there in 1636–1644.

  • The concept of the gentleman-amateur painter had little resonance in feudal Japan, where artists were generally professionals with a strong bond to their master and his school,
    rather than the classic artists from the distant past, from which Chinese painters tended to draw their inspiration.

  • [25] Though not named at the time as a specific genre, the popularity of Roman ruins inspired many Dutch landscape painters of the period to paint the ruins of their own region,
    such as monasteries and churches ruined after the Beeldenstorm.

  • If the primary purpose of a picture is to depict an actual, specific place, especially including buildings prominently, it is called a topographical view.

  • The monochrome Chinese tradition has used ink on silk or paper since its inception, with a great emphasis on the individual brushstroke to define the ts’un or “wrinkles” in
    mountain-sides, and the other features of the landscape.

  • The artist known as “Hand G”, probably one of the Van Eyck brothers, was especially successful in reproducing effects of light and in a natural-seeming progression from the
    foreground to the distant view.

  • [27] The popularity of landscapes in the Netherlands was in part a reflection of the virtual disappearance of religious painting in a Calvinist society, and the decline of
    religious painting in the 18th and 19th centuries all over Europe combined with Romanticism to give landscapes a much greater and more prestigious place in 19th-century art than they had assumed before.

  • Sky is almost always included in the view, and weather is often an element of the composition.

  • [47] A different style, produced by workshops of professional court artists, painted official views of Imperial tours and ceremonies, with the primary emphasis on highly detailed
    scenes of crowded cities and grand ceremonials from a high viewpoint.

  • Landscapes in watercolour on paper became a distinct specialism, above all in England, where a particular tradition of talented artists who only, or almost entirely, painted
    landscape watercolours developed, as it did not in other countries.

  • These were frequently used, as in the example illustrated, to bridge the gap between a foreground scene with figures and a distant panoramic vista, a persistent problem for
    landscape artists.

  • Aesthetic theories in both regions gave the highest status to the works seen to require the most imagination from the artist.

  • Most Dutch landscapes were relatively small, but landscapes in Flemish Baroque painting, still usually peopled, were often very large, above all in the series of works that
    Peter Paul Rubens painted for his own houses.

  • [52] Even rarer are survivals of landscape byōbu folding screens and hanging scrolls, which seem to have common in court circles – the Tale of Genji has an episode where members
    of the court produce the best paintings from their collections for a competition.

  • In the West this was history painting, but in East Asia it was the imaginary landscape, where famous practitioners were, at least in theory, amateur literati, including several
    Emperors of both China and Japan.

  • [11] Hand G, Bas-de-page of the Baptism of Christ, Turin-Milan Hours, Flanders c. 1425 During the 14th century Giotto di Bondone and his followers began to acknowledge nature
    in their work, increasingly introducing elements of the landscape as the background setting for the action of the figures in their paintings.

  • The scene from the Biography of the Priest Ippen illustrated below is from a scroll that in full measures 37.8 cm × 802.0 cm, for only one of twelve scrolls illustrating the
    life of a Buddhist monk; like their Western counterparts, monasteries and temples commissioned many such works, and these have had a better chance of survival than courtly equivalents.


Works Cited

[‘o British Library, Topographical collections: an overview Archived 2010-07-21 at the Wayback Machine.
o ^ British Library, Topographical prints and drawings: glossary of terms Archived 2010-07-12 at the Wayback Machine.
o ^ OED “Landscape”.
o ^
1632, John Milton in L’Allegro is the earliest cited by the OED
o ^ The “scaef” coming from the Old English “sceppan” meaning “to shape”. OED “Landscape”, Ingold, 126; Jackson, 156; Growth & Wilson, 2-3. See the “Etymology” section at Landscape
for further detail and references.
o ^ Honour & Fleming, 53. The only very complete example, the Spring Fresco is now in the National Archaeological Museum, Athens, but there are several others with only animal figures, surviving in fragments.
o ^
Honour & Fleming, 150–151
o ^ A major theme throughout both Sickman and Paine. See for example Sickmann pp. 132–133, 182–186, 203–204, 319, 352–356, and Paine pp. 160–168, 235–243.
o ^ Clark, 17–18
o ^ Clark, 23-4; image, another
o ^ Now removed
to the Palazzo Massimo; Commons images Archived 2012-08-12 at the Wayback Machine
o ^ The landscape in Western Painting, Minneapolis Institute of the Arts Archived 2009-07-25 at the Wayback Machine retrieved February 20, 2010
o ^ Clark, 31-2
o ^
Clark, 34-37
o ^ Honour & Fleming, 357, see Wood for full coverage
o ^ Ainsworth, Maryan Wynn et al., From Van Eyck to Bruegel: Early Netherlandish Paintings in the Metropolitan Museum of Art, p. 302, 323; 2009, Metropolitan Museum of Art, 2009.
ISBN 0-8709-9870-6, google books
o ^ See the landscape work of Barent Gael and Jacob van der Ulft, for example, whose Italian-style landscapes were formulaic copies, sometimes from prints.
o ^ Silver, p. 6-7
o ^ Poussin and The Heroic Landscape
Archived 2011-09-28 at Wikiwix by Joseph Phelan, retrieved December 17, 2009
o ^ Clark, Chapter 4
o ^ See the work of Willem van de Velde the Younger, Huchtenburg and Pauwels van Hillegaert
o ^ See the work of Aert van der Neer
o ^ See the
work of Jacques van Artois
o ^ See the work of Adriaen van Ostade
o ^ See the work of Roelant Roghman
o ^ The ruins of Egmond Abbey were popular for a century.
o ^ Slive 17
o ^ Reitlinger, 74-75, 85-87
o ^ Modern Painters, volume three,
“Of the novelty of landscape”.
o ^ Clark, 15–16.
o ^ Wilton & Lyles, 11-28, 28 quoted
o ^ See Wilton & Lyles, for all these
o ^ Prado., Museo del (1996). The Prado Museum : [collection of paintings]. Bettagno, Alessandro. [Spain?]: Fonds Mercator.
ISBN 9061533716. OCLC 38061864.
o ^ Spanish literature. Current debates on Hispanism. Foster, David William., Altamiranda, Daniel., Urioste-Azcorra, Carmen. New York: Garland Pub. 2001. ISBN 0815335628. OCLC 45223599.
o ^ Spain beyond Spain :
modernity, literary history, and national identity. Epps, Bradley S., Fernández Cifuentes, Luis. Lewisburg [PA]: Bucknell University Press. 2005. ISBN 0838755836. OCLC 56617356.
o ^ Kelly, Franklin (1989). Frederic Edwin Church (PDF). Washington:
National Gallery of Art. p. 32. ISBN 0-89468-136-2.
o ^ “Landscapes” in Virtual Vault Archived 2016-03-12 at the Wayback Machine, an online exhibition of Canadian historical art at Library and Archives Canada
o ^ Seno, Alexandra A. (2010-11-02).
“‘River of Wisdom’ is Hong Kong’s hottest ticket”. The Wall Street Journal. Archived from the original on 2017-07-09.
o ^ Sickman, 219-220
o ^ Sickman, 182
o ^ Sickman, 54-55
o ^ Watson, 72
o ^ Sickman, 82-84, and 186
o ^ Sickman, 182–183.
p. 182 quoted.
o ^ Sickman, 184–186, and p. 203
o ^ Sickman, 304-305
o ^ Princeton University Art Museum Archived 2011-07-02 at the Wayback Machine Wang Hong (act. ca. 1131-ca. 1161), Eight Views of the Xiao and Xiang Rivers (Xiao-Xiang ba jing)
o ^
Ebrey, Cambridge Illustrated History of China, 162.
o ^ Liu, 50.
o ^ Sickman, 322.
o ^ Paine, 20-21
o ^ Paine, 153–154
o ^ Paine, 107–108
o ^ Paine, 269-272
o ^ Pierce, 177–182
o ^ Watson, 42
o ^ Clark, 26
o ^ “The art of Colorado’s
landscape”. 9 August 2007. Archived from the original on 2015-09-23. Retrieved 2015-09-04. The Denver Post Landscape painting, The art of Colorado’s landscape
o ^ Clark, 34
Photo credit:’]