Netherlandish Art Essay by Calwriter

Netherlandish Art
This paper applies Roland Barthes's theorizing of word-image relations and the operation of systems of signs to Netherlandish art.
# 59595 | 1,815 words | 7 sources | MLA | 2005 | US
Published on Jun 22, 2005 in Art (History) , Art (Fine Art)

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This paper explains that Roland Barthes relates that the knowledge a viewer needs to understand the meaning of the image is bound up with perception and association, intangible and fluid cultural products, rather than with the stable carriers of meaning that constitute language. The author explores two Netherlandish paintings using this theory: "Still Life with Fruits and Flowers" by Balthasar van der Ast (late 1620s), which is in the Norton Simon Museum, Pasadena, California, and "Banquet Still Life" by Abraham van Beyeren (1667), which is in the Los Angeles County Museum of Art, Los Angeles, California. The paper concludes that these still life paintings immediately present the viewer with two layers of potential meaning: The decorative and the symbolic, with the latter very often embodying religious messages.

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