Inspiration of the Artist
Caspar David Friedrich
Originated in Europe
Events of the Time
The French Revolution which began in 1789 in the very early stages of the period, is clearly important, but highly variable depending on geography and individual reactions.
Romanticism was distinguished by its value on "emotion and individualism" (bc.edu) as well as glorification of the past and nature, preferring the medieval rather than the classical. It was partly a reaction to the Industrial Revolution, the "aristocratic social and political norms"(bc.edu) of the Age of Enlightenment, and the scientific rationalization of the wonders of nature.
Famous Works from the Time
The Market Cart
The dominant English romantic style can be found in landscapes like Thomas Gainsborough's The Market Cart (1786). This artist "captured the beauty and power of nature. They often used watercolors to give their paintings a feeling of freshness" (http://www.scholastic.com/browse/article.jsp?id=3753923).
The Young Girls
The Young Girls (1813) is painted by Francisco Goya. This picture is well known for it's flowing lines and good sense of depth. In the oil painting the two girls are featured in the center of older women doing laundry. One seems to be reading a note or a pocket book while the other opens a parasol to protect her skin from tanning or getting burnt. In that time period the women with the whitest skin were considered to be the wealthiest, judging from their clothing versus the older women's the young girls seem to be wealthier.
Created in 1871 Henry Fuseli painted The Nightmare. It depicts a sleeping woman draped over the end of a bed with her head hanging down. The sleeper seems lifeless, and, lying on her back, she takes a position believed to encourage nightmares.Her coloration consist of darker reds, yellows, and lots of shading of the background. The room is hung with red velvet curtains which drape behind the bed. Emerging from a parting in the curtain is the head of a horse with bold, featureless eyes. The monster on top of the woman represents the nightmare and some believe it captured the early stages of sleep paralysis.