Friday, September 14, 2007

Saturn Reflected


Goya and Rubens, Saturn Devouring His Children

After Jacques de Beaufort's interesting post, I began thinking of the nature of visual relationships in dichotomous analysis. I would love to know your thoughts on this comparison above.

7 comments:

Jacques de Beaufort said...

The Goya piece is better because it passes through his psyche and is mutated. The Rubens piece is just downright wierd. Rubens was never good with dark matter..he needed to keep everything safe and non-controversial. He's a great artist, but always in control, and therefore sometimes boring. I relate more to Goya, obviosuly..how about you Richard?

RichardTScott said...

I like both of these very much, for different reasons. But don't worry, I'm not going to cop out with a non-committal response.

Given my tendencies and aesthetic preferences I would typically choose the Rubens due to his technical virtuosity, the beauty of the light, and the solid formal composition.

However, I have to choose the Goya. His compositions are almost always solid, but also incredibly compelling formally - which is certainly the case in this piece. This on its own still wouldn't be enough for me. But Goya's Saturn is a more psychological passage (just as you said). Where this Rubens is somewhat didactic and simply shows the horror of the act, Goya's piece seems to reveal Saturn's own revulsion in the act. In some way we are seduced into identifying with Saturn as we all understand what it's like to be compelled to an action by which we ourselves are revolted. Also, in the Goya, there is a direct relationship between the technique and that which is expressed. The scumbling, the raw and unedited texture of brush strokes reinforce the content. Here the Rubens sadly falls short.

RichardTScott said...

Oh, and I think that's just it. Rubens technique is almost diametrically opposed to such a dark and vicious act. His technique naturally and exquisitely expresses voluptuous and sensual flesh. Carnal, yes, but in a vastly different way. It relates the pleasures of the body, but never seems to quite approach the soul.

Jacques de Beaufort said...

Yeah. it's like the difference between Jimi Hendrix and Eddie Van Halen.

RichardTScott said...

Precisely.

Lacónica said...

me encanta Goya!
no sé inglés pero me gustaría mucho saber qué decís sobre Cronos

RichardTScott said...

Gracias por su comentario. Hay un botón en el derecho de la página que dice los "pescados de Babel". Esto traducirá todo al español para usted y también traducirá lo que usted dice en el inglés para nosotros. Por favor sensación libremente a participar.