Hieronymus Bosch

A Crazy Guy Who Made Crazy Paintings (By Liam Frain)

Who was Bosch?

Hieronymus Bosch (actually, his real name was Jeroen Anthoniszoon) entered this world in 1453 C.E., in the town of North Brabant, which is located in Hertogenbosch, Netherlands. He actually spent the majority of his life in Hertogenbosch, working on his weird pieces of...erm..."art". Bosch's grandparents were painters, so it's no guess as to where he learned how to paint.


Bosch was often asked by his town's church to make images for them. At one point, the Archduke of Austria wanted him to paint a Last Judgement. The bad news is that most of the Church paintings are lost, so we could only imagine what they looked like. Actually, don't imagine them. You'll see why.

What was his art like?

At the beginning, Bosch's paintings were mostly religious scenes, notably The Seven Deadly Sins. Things started to get better when he made The Marriage at Cana, when his lines were smoother and he started to develop his own style.


And then came he "Middle Period". I'm just going to cut to the chase and say that this is where Bosch's work makes you say "What the heck?" For example, let's look at Haywain. This was broken up into three sections. The first panel looks almost like Heaven, with just a few Biblical references and nude people. The second panel consists of people (fully-clothed) trying to get some pieces of a big 'ol pile of hay. The third panel consists of fire, demons, pigs, people, pig-people and torture. See where things got bizarre?


During the last "period" of Bosch's abstract art, his work started to cool down with the high-octane nightmare fuel. Things were still "off", but not as much as his other works. Shall we peek at The Temptation Of Saint Anthony? It's not that bad. All we have is a fine gentleman praying in a field while off in the distance there's a church with a human face sticking out of it while birds, laser-shooting things, and people on flying fish circle said church.


Okay, he maybe he poured tiny bit more nightmare fuel than intended on that last one.

Who were his patrons?

Erm...The church and some wealthy people. Most of his works were commissioned, but we only know a few of the patrons who asked for art.


Here it is, in all of its weird, weird glory: The Last Judgement

Uh....What the heck!?

Here we have the one and only Last Judgement. Created sometime after 1482 C.E., this is one of Bosch's most well-known pieces of art. You'll probably spot this in Academy of Fine Arts, which is located in Vienna, Austria.



This distracting painting mostly helped Bosch become well-known in his community and truly set his art style, technique, and usage of colors. I mean most of his works are in this sort of dark brown-to-red-with-a-side-of-blues area.


I personally find this image really interesting because I draw a lot, and most of my little doodles are strange. I like strange. Bosch is strange. See the connection? The other reason is because this painting is so energetic, with a lot of detail in almost every nook and cranny.


I'd say Bosch and this...."lovely"....artwork represents Humanism. Humanism is all about whether or not humans are good, and this has that written all over it.

All of the citation stuff.

"Hieronymus Bosch." Encyclopedia of World Biography. Detroit: Gale, 1998.Biography in Context. Web. 18 Nov. 2013.



Creator : Hieronymus Bosch
Title : Triptych of the Last Judgement
Date : c. 1500
Repository : Akademie der Bildenden Künste in Wien, inv. 208
ARTstor : LESSING_ART_1039789082
URL : http://library.artstor.org/library/secure/ViewImages?id=%2FThWdC8hIywtPygxFTx5TncmXnAjdw%3D%3D