Wedgewood Paint Box Analysis

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This paint box manufactured by Wedgewood from 1785-1790 is a little blue container (7” x’5”) intended to hold a palette, and paints. It is ovular in shape and appears delicate with its use of small detail and fragile porcelain medium, and can be found currently in the Art Institute of Chicago. Design is soften thought of as forgoing fine art, but Wedgewood has created both in the paint box. It seems to reflect classical works of the Greek period and could be referred to as neo-classicism. The small figurines of children on the ellipse shaped body are done as reliefs and look to be playing with each other. They are also well distinguished by being bright white on a pale blue background, giving it a cool and gentle feel. Their scale is done in a way that almost pushes on the borders and forces you pay attention and understand a sense of space. The work throughout is very detailed, showing a high level of craft and quality; but not complex enough to prevent it from being produced multiple times. This could be found as a decorative work, considering the fragility and impractical size, though it may have been for the use of painting on a smaller scale.…show more content…
Originating from England, this box reflects Western and some Eastern art, using clean lines and very natural figures. The radial pattern on top is reminiscent of a mandala. This, along with the base images creates symmetry, a strong center axis, and movement of the eye from top center, to the edges, then counterclockwise around the box. The plane of the base is curved so this also encourages the viewer gaze to roam through what appears almost as a narration of characters. Opposing this nice visual movement, the palette and paint holders have no decoration, embellishing or details, consisting of clean efficient design

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