Wednesday, May 6, 2015

Jean-Honoré Fragonard

This site provides an introduction to everything about Fragonard. It includes a short biography, information about his style and technique, his influences, a small selection of his works, his followers, and a few of his critics. It isn’t anything too extensive, but rather provides a nice overview of multiple components of his career.  

This link provides a small amount of information about Fragonard, but what I liked the most about it was the option to scroll through a list of his works on the bottom. Upon selecting one of the pieces, the website provides information (when you click show details) such as the genre, technique, material, and more. Some of the pieces also have a short description about their content is showing.

This website, while similar to the last one, includes many more of Fragonard’s pieces. It provides more options as to how pieces can be sorted, including medium, time span in which the work was created, and style. The only problem I have with it is that it does not describe his pieces in as much detail as the previous website. It also provides a section to look at where there is an extensive bibliography on him.

The first piece by Fragonard that I saw (the image included above) is titled The Swing. I was initially drawn in by the playfulness, and was kept there after I learned more about the story behind it, which can be found in the wikiart link. It was charming, witty, and flirtatious. The colors (pastel tones) and the overall style was beautiful, I could not find anything that I didn’t like. The Swing is a piece that appeals to the senses. I saw this piece in one of the art history classes that I took, so we were able to discuss this piece for nearly half an hour so that I was able to learn everything I possibly could about it. The more I learned, the more fascinated I was. As I continued to research Fragonard’s work, much of his work caused similar reactions. He painted in a period of the Baroque era called Rococo, which was a feminine, frivolous period that often had very light subject matters, which is something I would prefer over another work, for example a religious painting from the Renaissance period which would be much more serious.

Click here for a YouTube video that explains more about this particular painting if you are interested.