After the Romantics
Origin of After the Romantics Series:
“Romanticism is precisely situated neither in choice of subject nor in exact truth, but in a way of feeling.” Charles Baudelaire
In Romantic art, nature with its uncontrollable power, unpredictability, and potential for cataclysmic extremes offered an alternative to the ordered world of Enlightenment thought. The violent and terrifying images of nature conjured by Romantic artists recall the eighteenth-century aesthetic of the Sublime. As articulated by the British statesman Edmund Burke in a 1757 treatise and echoed by the French philosopher Denis Diderot a decade later, all that stuns the soul, all that imprints a feeling of terror, leads to the sublime.
In its stylistic diversity and range of subjects, Romanticism defies simple categorization. As the poet and critic Charles Baudelaire wrote in 1846, Romanticism is precisely situated neither in choice of subject nor in exact truth, but in a way of feeling. (excerpt from Kathryn Calley Galitz Department of European Paintings, The Metropolitan Museum of Art)