Lack Of Shadows In Dantes Inferno

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In the deepest depths of Hell, the punishment of sinners can be difficult to comprehend to the everyday man. It is through art that one can truly begin to understand the pain and suffering these souls have to endure to atone for their sins. The artist Gustave Dore produced art, including many engravings, to illustrate the different monsters and aspects of the different rings of Dante’s Hell. Born in 1832, Gustave Dore is a French printmaker with an amazing set of creative talents. From a young age, Dore was noticed by those around him to be an outstanding artist, and at 16 he began to work for a Parisian based newspaper creating weekly caricatures. Along with creating artwork on The Inferno, Dore also created artwork for other famous works…show more content…
Dore’s use of the lighter shades of grey closer to the front of the piece gives the illusion that the viewer of the piece is providing the light for the work of art. Most of the light provided by Dore in the piece is focused upon one sinner and the tree his soul inhabits. With the use of light, the viewer is able to see the immense pain the sinners endure from the Harpies. A minute detail that may have normally gone unnoticed is Dore’s lack of shadows. Through this, Dore is able to express his belief that the souls of the sinners lack meaning and purpose and do not leave anything meaningful behind them. Another minute detail in the piece is the amount of trees and Harpies found in the front of the engraving. The sheer amount of beings makes the scene cluttered and busy, but that may have been the appearance Dore was looking for. Dore may be trying to express the large amount of sinners found in the forest in the Seventh Circle of Hell. Additionally, by Dore incorporating Dante and Virgil in the far distance of the scene, he is able to create a great depth to the illustration, further enhancing its artistic prowess. Overall, the artistic
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