Fantastic art

BY BELISARIO RIGHI



Art and fantasy, an indissolubly linked pair, so much so that the former cannot be separated from the latter. Art without an impetus that leads the artist outside the realistic contingency, cannot be creative and creativity is the fundamental matrix of every work of art. In this the fantasy, becoming creative fantasy, assumes a role of primary importance, because it represents all that is beyond the real, drawing on the beautiful, the sublime, but also the grotesque and the horrid, putting every expressive possibility into play, in the representation of a spiritual answer to the questions that invade the soul, looking for an outlet in the creative impulse and when this is expressed and materialized in a work, however strange and bizarre it may be, a work of art will be created . Because Art is fantasy and fantasy is art. Man has always tried to give shape and meaning to the inexplicable, trying to communicate to other human beings his own sense of beauty and why not, also of monstrosity, using all available means. In an attempt to make dreams concrete, philosophers, writers, scientists, musicians and, in any case, always artists were born. Visionary figurative art is the one that more than all other forms of art has ventured into this field, creating surreal and metaphysical images, which are a dialogue between the real and the unreal, between the concrete and the fantastic and often also, between the contingent and the transcendent. "Whoever does not imagine stronger and more beautiful features, stronger tones and a better light than his mortal eye can see, cannot imagine at all." William Blake. Mati Klarwein Brilliant and visionary artist is inspired by pop culture, symbolism and surrealism. In his works he blends psychedelic and exotic ethnicism, erotic and religious themes, summarizing everything in his particular fantastic-surrealist style, defined psychedelic surrealism.


Flight into Egypt - Mati Klarwein - 1960



His most famous work Annunciation was adopted by the musician Santana for the cover of the ABRAXAS album.


Annunciation - Mati Klarwein - 1961



Salvador Dalì

The temptation of Saint Anthony painted by Salvador Dalì in 1946 in New York is an oil on canvas with a size of 90 x 120.

The temptation of Saint Anthony - Salvador Dalì - 1946


Saint Anthony raises a crucifix, as a sign of protection, towards a runaway white horse, behind which four elephants advance. Animals symbolize Evil in its various expressions. The horse is the madness that dominates the lustful and the violence of power. While the four elephants carry on their backs objects and symbolic images of clear erotic connotation. The first carries a pyramid, at the top of which appears a naked woman who touches herself with vulgar sensuality; the second carries an obelisk, an evident phallic symbol; the third carries a Palladian-style construction in which parts of the female body stand out; the fourth, at the bottom, partly hidden by the clouds, holds a tower on its back, another phallic symbol. The place of action is desert and the desolation of the landscape sharpens the anguish of temptations, while the saint's nakedness recalls the fragility of the human being, who clings to an act of faith to defend himself from the fury that is about to overwhelm him. The legs of pachyderms, slender like those of spiders, with their elongated and very thin deformation allow animals to enter a dimension between the earth and the sky, between reality and spirituality, making the image even more dreamlike. Lawrence Alma-Tadema The Roses of Heliogabalus, painted by Sir Lawrence Alma Tadema in 1888, is inspired by episodes from the life of the Roman Emperor Heliogabalus.



The roses of Heliogabalus - Lawrence Alma-Tadema



Painting in a typically decadent style, due to the redundant representation of aesthetic elements, where the characteristic features of the artist's painting, such as the sense of soft sloth and the invasiveness of floral decorations, are all present and together combine to describe the refined and depraved debauchery of the court of the Roman Emperor Heliogabalus. The pleased and interested gaze, towards the ephebes submerged by rose petals, of the Emperor (the first on the left) and his mother (in the center) with a friend, who are accompanied by the joyful young boys sitting at their table, is the realistic element that serves as a counterpoint to the overall visionary chorus and increases the aspect of fantastic surrealism.


Odilon Redon

In this work, the painter portrays Polyphemus contemplating the nakedness of Galatea, in a disturbing dreamlike atmosphere that refers to the worst nightmares.

The Cyclops - Odilon Redon - 1895

Odilon Redon, an important exponent of symbolism in painting, is inspired by the great symbolist literature of the time, from Poe to Baudelaire to Huysmans, transfiguring his ideas, thoughts, dreams and strong emotions on the canvases. His works, full of restless and mysterious visions, go beyond nineteenth-century realism and aspire to a transcendent reality. Redon understands painting as the visualization of the unconscious, exactly as it appears in the dream, where the sensations and the figures, while relating to everyday reality, go beyond reasoning and enter an emotional sphere that no longer has ties to logic.






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