Thursday, September 10, 2009

The Destruction of Sodom and Gomorrah

The incest of the daughters with her father was only one aspect which could interest painters in the story of Lot. The other was the destruction of Sodom and Gomorrah, the wrath of God. In Renaissance and Baroque paintings dominates clearly the incest aspect. But with the rising importance of dramatic landscapes from the late 18th century onwards artists focused more on destruction.

The Destruction of Sodom and Gomorrah (1852) by the English Romantic painter and illustrator John Martin (1789–1854).

Martin was a specialist in apocalyptic sceneries. He painted the destruction of Herculaneum, the Eve of the Deluge, the Fall of Nineveh, the Fall of Babylon and others. Normally the expositions of his huge paintings were great events, a kind of early movie theatre. The art critic Ruskin spoke of „vulgar sensationalism“. Nevertheless Martin gained even more money with popular prints of his paintings.

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