Oath Of The Horatii Essay

Good Essays
Even though in my opinion, throughout the history, art was, in great part, always used to convey messages and as a means to impose ideas, in the particular cases of Neoclassical and Romantic movements this conspicuous intent raises to the eyes of a trained observer. Not surprisingly, both styles share their origins in a revolutionary France and echoed Nicolas Poussin 's 17th century classicism as a form to put rationalism before the sensuality observed in the Rococo (Gersh-Nesic, n.d., para. 1). In that moment of history, France was experiencing the dualism between monarchy and republican ideals. As McCoy (n.d.) puts, Neoclassical pioneer painter Jacques-Louis David 's Oath of the Horatii (Figure 1 oil on canvas, 3.3 x 4.25m, commissioned by Louis XVI, painted in Rome, exhibited at the salon of 1785 -- today in the Musée du Louvre), could be interpreted as designed in order to "rally republicans (…) by telling them that their cause will require the dedication and sacrifice of the Horatii" (para. 10). Although the author affirms there are disagreements related to this interpretation, considering David 's own political tendencies at the time, it is quite acceptable that he could be using his work, and the message behind Horatii 's story, as a means to…show more content…
2). While in the first masterpiece, above described, the artist 's manifest call on the republicans to sacrifice for the country was perceived in the depiction of Horatii 's passage, with severe and clear plane arrangement, and "starkly athletic figures and resolute poses of the men" (McCoy, n.d., para. 6); the second reveals Napoleon as an administrator who was working late, somehow with a disheveled appearance, maybe as David 's early vision of his decadence, which actually followed two years later (Zygmont, n.d.,
Get Access