You are browsing the archive for Art & Illustrations.

Fallen Angels: Birds of Paradise in Early Modern Europe

Adam Green - April 4, 2018 in Art & Illustrations, birds, birds of paradise, conrad gesner, conrad gessner, Religion, Myth & Legend, Ulisse Aldrovandi

When birds of paradise first arrived to Europe, as dried specimens with legs removed, they were seen in almost mythical terms — as angelic beings forever airborne, nourished by dew and the "nectar" of sunlight. Natalie Lawrence looks at how European naturalists of the 16th and 17th centuries attempted to make sense of these entirely novel and exotic creatures from the East.

Pens and Needles: Reviving Book-Embroidery in Victorian England

Adam Green - March 21, 2018 in Art & Illustrations, arts and crafts movement, book arts, Books, embroidered book covers, embroidery, may morris, queen elizabeth, victorian, victorian england, william morris

Fashionable in the 16th and 17th century, the art of embroidering unique covers for books saw a comeback in late 19th-century England, from the middle-class drawing room to the Arts and Crafts movement. Jessica Roberson explores the bibliomania, patriotism, and issues around gender so central to the revival.

Pens and Needles: Reviving Book-Embroidery in Victorian England

Adam Green - March 21, 2018 in Art & Illustrations, arts and crafts movement, book arts, Books, embroidered book covers, embroidery, may morris, queen elizabeth, victorian, victorian england, william morris

Fashionable in the 16th and 17th century, the art of embroidering unique covers for books saw a comeback in late 19th-century England, from the middle-class drawing room to the Arts and Crafts movement. Jessica Roberson explores the bibliomania, patriotism, and issues around gender so central to the revival.

Illustrating Carnival: Remembering the Overlooked Artists Behind Early Mardi Gras

Adam Green - February 7, 2018 in Art & Illustrations, carnival, costumes, Culture & History, fancy dress, Fat tuesday, Featured Articles, mardi gras, new orleans, new orleans mardi gras

For more than 150 years the city of New Orleans has been known for the theatricality and extravagance of its Mardi Gras celebrations. Allison C. Meier looks at the wonderfully ornate float and costume designs from Carnival's "Golden Age" and the group of New Orleans artists who created them.

The Dreams of an Inventor in 1420

Adam Green - January 24, 2018 in Art & Illustrations, automatons, engineering, Featured Articles, inventions, inventors, Renaissance, Science & Medicine

Bennett Gilbert peruses a sketchbook of 15th-century engineer Johannes de Fontana, a catalogue of designs for a wide-range of fantastic and often impossible inventions, including fire-breathing automatons, pulley-powered angels, and the earliest surviving drawing of a magic lantern device.

Pods, Pots, and Potions: Putting Cacao to Paper in Early Modern Europe

Adam Green - December 7, 2017 in Art & Illustrations, botanical art, botanical illustrations, cacao, chocolate, cocoa, colonialism, Culture & History, food, illustration, Science & Medicine

Christine Jones explores the different ways the cacao tree has been depicted through history — from 16th-century codices to 18th-century botanicals — and what this changing iconography reveals about cacao's journey into European culture.

Pods, Pots, and Potions: Putting Cacao to Paper in Early Modern Europe

Adam Green - December 7, 2017 in Art & Illustrations, botanical art, botanical illustrations, cacao, chocolate, cocoa, colonialism, Culture & History, food, illustration, Science & Medicine

Christine Jones explores the different ways the cacao tree has been depicted through history — from 16th-century codices to 18th-century botanicals — and what this changing iconography reveals about cacao's journey into European culture.

Brief Encounters with Jean-Frédéric Maximilien de Waldeck

Adam Green - November 22, 2017 in archaeology, Art & Illustrations, Culture & History, Jean-Frédéric de Waldeck, Mayan history, Mayanism, mayans, mexico, Neoclassicism, Palenque

Not a lot concerning the artist, erotic publisher, explorer, and general enigma Count de Waldeck can be taken at face value, and this certainly includes his fanciful representations of ancient Mesoamerican culture which — despite the exquisite brilliance of their execution — run wild with anatopistic lions, elephants, and suspicious architecture. Rhys Griffiths looks at the life and work of one of the 19th century's most mysterious and eccentric figures.

Brief Encounters with Jean-Frédéric Maximilien de Waldeck

Adam Green - November 22, 2017 in archaeology, Art & Illustrations, Culture & History, Jean-Frédéric de Waldeck, Mayan history, Mayanism, mayans, mexico, Neoclassicism, Palenque

Not a lot concerning the artist, erotic publisher, explorer, and general enigma Count de Waldeck can be taken at face value, and this certainly includes his fanciful representations of ancient Mesoamerican culture which — despite the exquisite brilliance of their execution — run wild with anatopistic lions, elephants, and suspicious architecture. Rhys Griffiths looks at the life and work of one of the 19th century's most mysterious and eccentric figures.

Flash Mob: Revolution, Lightning, and the People’s Will

Adam Green - November 9, 2017 in allegory, Art & Illustrations, benjamin franklin, Culture & History, Featured Articles, french revolution, Jean-Paul Marat, Joseph Priestley, lightning, Maximilien Robespierre, power, revolution, Science, symbolism, thunderbolt

Kevin Duong explores how leading French revolutionaries, in need of an image to represent the all important “will of the people”, turned to the thunderbolt — a natural symbol of power and illumination that also signalled the scientific ideals so key to their project.