Pictures with character

Updated: Sep 5, 2023 By Lin Qi CHINA DAILY Print
Share - WeChat
Woman and Children, by Edouard Vuillard. LIN QI/CHINA DAILY

Artistic interpretations

However, the most eye-catching Napoleon portrait at the show is, unarguably, Bonaparte Crossing the Great St. Bernard, also known as Napoleon Crossing the Alps, which is attributed to the workshop of Jacques-Louis David.

The work depicts the famed general in his signature uniform, sitting comfortably and calmly on a rearing horse, against a backdrop of snowcapped mountains.

It was half realistic, inspired by a successful military campaign led by Napoleon himself in 1800.

While created with a heavy sense of idolatry — the painting shows one of his hands pointing to the sky and his bright red robe is whipped by the wind — it accentuates the image of a youthful figure with a strong will, a well-defined physique and sound judgment.

David was a celebrated painter at the time who trained a number of great students including the aforementioned Gerard and Jean-Auguste-Dominique Ingres, whose painting Jupiter and Thetis is also on show.

David's famous works include The Death of Marat, and yet it is, perhaps, his depictions of Napoleon that have made his name familiar to people around the world. David was believed to be a fervent admirer of Napoleon and once said, after a meeting with the general, "what a beautiful head he has! It is pure …beautiful like (an) antique".

< 1 2 3 4 5 6 >

Copyright©2024 China Daily. All rights reserved.


京公网安备 11010502032503号 京公网安备 11010502032503号