Connect with us

DailyArtMagazine.com – Art History Stories

How Reclining Nude Concept Changed After Olympia?

Art History 101

How Reclining Nude Concept Changed After Olympia?

When French artist Edouard Manet finished his well -known painting “Olympia” in 1863, lot changed in the history of art because of his technique and the fresh look he brought into art world. His image of reclining nude was a novel concept in the times that Titian and Goya already done similar things in different style. However, Manet has lot to say with his different reclining nude offers something special for the artists in after him.

Reclining nude Edouard Manet, Olympia, 1856, Paris Salon

Edouard Manet, Olympia, 1856, Musee d’Orsay, Paris

Manet and his very traditional subject matter affected the generation after him because he combined something very common with a different technique, which is basically reduced modeling and swallow pictorial space. Therefore, Manet, reject to practice on his paintings as academic approach suggests so.

Reclining nude Birth of Venus, Alexandre Cabanel, 1863, Musée d’Orsay, Paris

Birth of Venus, Alexandre Cabanel, 1863, Musée d’Orsay, Paris


For example, Titian’s Venus of Urbino is a classical Renaissance painting that tries to depict subject matter as a part of the nature and gives audience the impression of reality with three dimensions. On the other hand, Olympia rejects to use three dimensions and forms his subject matter as a pale white woman.

Reclining nude Titian, Venus of Urbino, 1538, Galleria degli Uffizi, Florence

Titian, Venus of Urbino, 1538, Galleria degli Uffizi, Florence

It’s not only Manet changed the traditional artistic approach before him but he also bring a fresh look to academy in terms of the subject matter and the context of the painting. Before Olympia, academic approach to reclining nude is to create a subject matter from a goddess, odalisque or a beautiful woman. When Olympia exhibited in Official Salon it was the most criticized painting because of the subject matter and other successful ones were the mythological topics like the Birth of Venus (1863) or orientalist approaches similar to Odalisque with a Slave (1842).


Manet changed this view and gave a place to a contemporary prostitute in his painting. In his time, prostitution was common and he wanted to bring the topic to art. So he updated his art with a modern subject matter and also used art historical tradition to convey his message.

Different approaches in art practiced after Olympia to break cultural and technical issues similar to Venus of Urbino.


Here are some of the different representations of the reclining nude concept in art history:

1. Jean Auguste Dominique Ingres, Odalisque with a Slave, 1842 (Before Olympia)

Reclining nude Jean-Auguste-Dominique Ingres, Odalisque with a Slave, 1842, Harvard Art Museums/Fogg Museum, Cambridge, Massachusetts

Jean-Auguste-Dominique Ingres, Odalisque with a Slave, 1842, Harvard Art Museums/Fogg Museum, Cambridge, Massachusetts

2. Paul Cezanne, A Modern Olympia 1870

Reclining nudePaul Cezanne, A Modern Olympia, 1870, Musée d'Orsay

Paul Cezanne, A Modern Olympia, 1870, Musée d’Orsay

3. Amedeo Modigliani, Reclining Nude, 1917

Reclining nude Amedeo Modigliani, Reclining Nude, 1917

Amedeo Modigliani, Reclining Nude, 1917, private collection

4. Henri Matisse, The Pink Nude, 1935

Reclining nudethe pink nude, Henri Matisse, 1935

Henri Matisse, The Pink Nude, 1935, Baltimore Museum of Art

5. Mel Ramos, Olympia, 1974

 Reclining nudeOlympia, Mel Ramos, 1974

Mel Ramos, Olympia, 1974, private collection

Comments

More in Art History 101

  • Elliot Tupac mural Elliot Tupac mural

    21st century

    The Art of Latin American Lettering

    By

    Latin American lettering is a legacy of craft-based traditions with a strong design and vibrant colors enhanced by an aesthetic with a rich indigenous identity and history. Cartelismo Popular Craft in the USA and Europe are different than in Latin America. In northern countries, usually, craft techniques...

  • Prehistoric Sculpture Prehistoric Sculpture

    Ancient

    Sacred Signs – Prehistoric Sculpture

    By

    It seems that forming figurative shapes out of natural materials has always been with us. As humans developed, a bigger, more sophisticated brain allowed for more processing power and higher functions such as language and creative expression. Prehistoric art covers a period from the Stone Age...

  • 21st century

    Art of the Brick – Nathan Sawaya’s Lego Works

    By

    Lego springs to mind as one of the key toys of many people’s childhoods. Whether building houses, spacecrafts or just stepping on that elusive piece, most people have some kind of experience with the little plastic building blocks. For some, however, it became a mean of...

  • Medici. Rich Sinners Medici. Rich Sinners

    Art History 101

    The Medici. Rich Sinners or Saintly Rulers?

    By

    The Medici were one of the richest family dynasties that ever lived and perhaps the most influential patrons of the arts in history. For it was their great wealth and patronage from which the Renaissance of art and architecture was born out of medieval Florence. Though...

  • Art History 101

    The Muse Throughout Art History: Inspiration, Love, and Friendship

    By

    In terms of Ancient Greek mythology, the term muse refers to nine daughters of Zeus and Mnemosyne, with each daughter having her own attribute, which reflected the desire for musical and artistic inspiration as well the desire for knowledge. The modern term of the muse throughout...

To Top

Just to let you know, DailyArt Magazine’s website uses cookies to personalise content and adverts, to provide social media features and to analyse traffic. Read cookies policy