The coldness of fairy tales

Edward Burne-Jones
24 October 2018 – 24 February 2019
Tate Britain, London, UK

The art berries visited recently the current art exhibition of Edward Burne-Jones, now at Tate Britain gallery in London.

Ned Jones, later Sir Edward Coley Burne-Jones, 1st Baronet (1833-98), was one of the last Pre-Raphaelites, who were always looking back to the past as their name indicates. He rejected the industrial world of the Victorians and made spectacular works depicting classical heroes, Arthurian knights, fairy tale heroines and angels in different mediums. He studied theology at Oxford, where he met his lifelong collaborator William Morris, with whom he was a pioneer of the arts and crafts movement, which aimed to bring beautiful design to everyone through the Aesthetic movement. After embracing the style of Dante Gabriel Rosetti when he was in his 20s, he carried on producing the same sort of works until his death in 1898. 

I enjoyed seeing a series of his drawings at the beginning of the exhibition, which showcase his draughtsmanship skills, and his big scale paintings are well-composed and rather evocative. However, with his paintings I kept on encountering very similar faces of classical, cold and expressionless beauty. Even when he depicted real people such as his daughter or the daughter of prime minister William Gladstone on one of his most famous paintings “The Golden Stairs” on show here, all faces seem to have the same features. Almost as if he had recycled a likeness and he couldn’t bother distinguishing much between one woman or another.

This is the perfect art show to visit if you are interested in medieval art, religion, greek mythology and legends and want to travel back in time for inspiration. You can see across the exhibition the various forms in which he developed his art, from drawing to painting, passing by tapestry, embroidery, jewellery and stained glass windows.

I must say, I didn’t find much of an evolution in his work along this solo show, presented as a retrospective. He was very famous and very prolific with his art, but he didn’t seem to have developed his technique nor his style very much throughout his life. It may be the price you pay when you become so famous and have so many commissions coming in.

This is his first solo show at Tate since 1933 comprising over 150 artworks from across his career including his most famous paintings, such as the “The Golden Stairs”, “The Beguiling of Merlin” and the Sleeping Beauty series, some of them on show below. The curators of Tate Britain wanted to do a good homage to Burne-Jones as one the most influential artist of the 19th century, during the Victorian period. I wouldn’t go as far as to say that he was a Pre-Raphaelite visionary. And for sensuous beauty, I’d rather look at the work of other Pre-Raphaelite painters, such as Dante Gabriel Rosetti.

Having said that, I won’t deny his value as a decorative artists, his attention to detail and his input with regards to Art Nouveau in Britain. Therefore, if you have an appeal for classical heroes and fairy tales, and you like a Gothic style, you will almost certainly like this art show.

Below you can see The art blackberry performing next to Burne-Jones’ “Perseus and the Graiae”, a painting representing Perseus encountering the Graiae, three sisters of the Gorgons, who have between them only one tooth and one eye. As the eye is passed between them, Perseus steals it forcing them to tell him the way to find the nymphs he’s looking for.


La frialdad de los cuentos de hadas

Edward Burne-Jones
24 de octubre de 2018 – 24 de febrero de 2019
Tate Britain, Londres, Reino Unido

The art berries visitaron recientemente la exposición de arte de Edward Burne-Jones que hay ahora en la galería Tate Britain en Londres.

Ned Jones, después Sir Edward Coley Burne-Jones, 1er Baronet (1833-98), fue uno de los últimos prerrafaelistas, a los que les gustaba tomar como inspiración el arte del pasado, como su propio nombre indica. Rechazó el mundo industrial de los victorianos e hizo obras espectaculares que representan a héroes clásicos, caballeros de la época del rey Arturo, heroínas de cuento de hadas y ángeles en diferentes medios. Estudió teología en Oxford, donde conoció a William Morris, su colaborador de toda la vida, con quien fue pionero en el “arts and crafts movement,” cuyo objetivo era brindar un diseño hermoso a todo el mundo a través del movimiento Estético. Después de abrazar el estilo de Dante Gabriel Rosetti cuando tenía 20 años, continuó produciendo el mismo tipo de obras hasta su muerte en 1898.

Me gustaron la serie de dibujos expuestos al comienzo de la exposición, que muestran sus habilidades con el dibujo y sus pinturas a gran escala están bien compuestas y son bastante evocadoras. Sin embargo, con sus pinturas seguí encontrando caras muy similares de belleza clásica, fría e inexpresiva. Incluso cuando representaba a personas reales como su hija o la hija del primer ministro William Gladstone en uno de sus cuadros más famosos, “The Golden Stairs” que se muestra aquí debajo, todas las caras parecen tener las mismas características. Casi como si hubiera reciclado una fisonomía y no pudiera molestarse en distinguir mucho entre una mujer u otra.

Esta es la muestra de arte perfecta para visitar si estás interesado en el arte medieval, la religión, la mitología griega y las leyendas, y quieres viajar al pasado en busca de inspiración. Puedes ver a través de la exposición las diversas formas en las que desarrolló su arte, desde el dibujo hasta la pintura, pasando por el tapiz, el bordado, la joyería y las vidrieras.

 

Debo decir, que no encontré mucha evolución en su trabajo a lo largo de esta exposición que se presenta como una retrospectiva. Fue muy famoso y muy prolífico con su arte, pero no parece haber desarrollado mucho su técnica ni su estilo durante toda su vida. Puede ser el precio que pagas cuando te vuelves tan famoso y recibes tantas comisiones.

Esta es su primera exposición individual en Tate desde 1933, con más de 150 obras de arte de toda su carrera, incluidas sus pinturas más famosas, como “The Golden Stairs”, “The Beguiling of Merlin” y la serie Sleeping Beauty, algunas de las cuales se muestran debajo. abajo. Los curadores de Tate Britain querían hacer un buen homenaje a Burne-Jones como uno de los artistas más influyentes del siglo XIX durante el período victoriano. Sin embargo, no me atrevería a decir que Burne-Jones fué un visionario pre-rrafaelista. Y en cuanto a belleza sensual, prefiero el trabajo de otros pintores pre-rrafaelitas, como Dante Gabriel Rosetti.

Dicho esto, no negaré su valor como artistas decorativo, su atención a los detalles y su aporte con respecto al Art Nouveau en Gran Bretaña. Por lo tanto, si te atraen los héroes clásicos y los cuentos de hadas, y le gusta el estilo gótico, es casi seguro que le gustará esta muestra de arte.

Debajo puedes ver a The art blackberry junto a “Perseus and the Graiae” de Burne-Jones, una pintura que representa a Perseus encontrándose con Graiae, tres hermanas de las Gorgonas, que tienen entre ellas solo un diente y un ojo. Cuando el ojo pasa entre ellas, Perseo lo roba y los obliga a decirle cómo encontrar a las ninfas que está buscando.

Burne-Jones_The art blackberryBurne-Jones_The art blueberry

The art blueberry next to “The wheel of fortune” by Edward Burne-Jones.
The art blueberry junto a “The wheel of fortune” por Edward Burne-Jones.

Burne-Jones_Golden Stairs

“The Golden Stairs” by Edward Burne-Jones.

Burne-Jones_Sleeping Beauty 1

“The Garden Court” (1874-84) by Edward Burne-Jones.

Burne-Jones_Sleeping Beauty 2Burne-Jones_Sleeping Beauty 3

Various paintings above from the series part of “The sleeping beauty” by Edward Burne-Jones.
Varias pinturas arriba parte de la serie de “La bella durmiente” de Edward Burne-Jones.

Author: The art blueberry

The creative director and editor of The art berries. She enjoys sharing an innovative perspective of the latest art exhibitions and anything else that catches her eye within the arts scene in London and occasionally around the world.

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