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1849-1917
 

I 1848 grundlagdes The Pre-Raphaelite BrotherhoodTaf en gruppe unge engelske malere, der havde deres egne forestillinger om, hvordan et maleri skulle være. De følte sig lammede af The Royal Academy med dets stive og fastlåste ideer om, hvordan smagfuld og skøn kunst burde være.

The Pre-Raphaelite Brotherhood mente, at den eneste form for ægte stor kunst stammede fra tiden før 1500-tallets italienske maler, Rafael. Han repræsenterede renæssancens højdepunkt, hvor malere i stedet for at lade motiverne styre billedernes indhold, manipulerede med motiverne, så disse passede til malernes egne skønhedsidealer – hvorved enhver form for realisme forsvandt. The Pre-Raphaelite Brotherhood afviste denne form for idealisering og skabte derimod værker baseret på rigtige landskaber og rigtige modeller og med stor omhu i detaljer og farver.

John William Waterhouse, der blev født i 1849, var selvsagt ikke medlem af The Pre-Raphaelite Brotherhood (der i øvrigt opløstes efter kun tre år), men hans billeder er noget af det ypperste indenfor stilen – der hos Waterhouse rammende kan beskrives som post-præ-rafaelittisk. Hans teknik er uovertruffen, og væk er de oprindelige præ-rafaelittiske stive modeller, som typisk ses hos bl.a. Dante Gabriel Rossetti og Edward Burne-Jones. Han forfalder heller ikke til det tilløb til lummerhed, man kan se hos nogle af hans samtidige post-præ-rafaelitter, f.eks. Lawrence Alma-Tadema og Fredric Leighton.  

In 1848 The Pre-Raphaelite Brotherhood was founded by a group of young English painters who had their own conceptions of what a painting should be like. They felt paralysed by the Royal Academy with its rigid and fixed ideas about tasteful and beautiful art.

The Pre-Raphaelite Brotherhood believed that the only true great art was found in the time before the 14th-century Italian painter, Raphael. He represented the climax of the Renaissance where painters, instead of letting their motifs guide the contents of their paintings, manipulated the motifs to fit their own ideals of beauty – thus losing any kind of realism. The Pre-Raphaelite Brotherhood rejected this form of idealisation and created works based on real landscapes and real models and with meticulous care for detail and colour.

Born in 1849, John William Waterhouse was obviously not a member of the Pre-Raphaelite Brotherhood (who, by the way, disbanded after only three years), but his paintings represent the best in the style – which in the case of Waterhouse fittingly may be called post-pre-raphalite. His technique is unsurpassed and gone are the rigid models typically seen in the paintings of e.g. Dante Gabriel Rossetti and Edward Burne-Jones. Neither does he succumb to the touch of semi-pornographic suggestiveness of some of his contemporary fellow post-pre-raphaelites, e.g. Lawrence Alma-Tadema and Fredric Leighton.  

 

 

A Hamadryad A Hamadryad

 

A Naiad A Naiad

 

Boreas Boreas

 

Circe Invidiosa Circe Invidiosa

 

Echo and Narcissus Echo and Narcissus

 

Hylas and the Nymphs Hylas and the Nymphs

 

La Belle Dame Sans Merci La Belle Dame Sans Mersi

 

Lamia Lamia

 

Ophelia Ophelia

 

Pandora Pandora

 

Psyche Entering Cupid's Garden Psyche Entering Cupid's Garden

 

Psyche Opening the Golden Box Psyche Opening the Golden Box

 

The Awakening of Adonis The Awakening of Adonis

 

The Charmer The Charmer

 

The Danaides The Danaides

 

The Lady of Shalott The Lady of Shalott

 

The Shrine The Shrine

 

Ulysses and the Sirens Ulysses and the Sirens

 

Windflowers Windflowers