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Prometheus Bound Essay

  • Submitted by: lilya243
  • on November 19, 2013
  • Category: Arts and Music
  • Length: 1,700 words

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Below is an essay on "Prometheus Bound" from Anti Essays, your source for research papers, essays, and term paper examples.

Prometheus Bound Peter Paul Ruben

Prometheus Bound is a massively large oil painting (95 ½” x 82 ½”) made by the artist Peter Paul Rubens (the eagle was painted by Frans Synders) in the South Netherlands through the years 1611 until it was completed in 1618. This painting depicts many different identities and symbols within it. It contains an explicit narrative context filled with Greek Mythology and even some religion. Prometheus, the commonly known mythological hero is lying nude fighting against an eagle that is attempting to tear open his flesh and devour him. This painting has many religious, and political concerns, assumptions and ideas, which I would say, are directly related to Rubens world as an artist. The style and context of it can be compared and referenced to many other earlier works of art by other artists and time periods. Ruben was a very vivid artist, which he showed in his brush strokes, colors, and content of his work. He is known as one of the best contributing artists to the Flemish Baroque painting style era. This painting is one that was treasured dearly by its creator for good reason, it accurately portrays the symbols, meanings, and personality that the artist wanted.
Starting off by examining the work to determine exactly what the identities of things represented in the painting are, along with the setting in which the painting takes place, and what the actions, poses, and gestures seem to be depicted. Ruben described the painting like this; "A Prometheus bound on Mount Caucasus with an eagle which pecks his liver. Original by my hand the eagle done by Snyders" (1).   The solo male figure in this painting is Prometheus, who is lying backwards on top of blue and white drapery (drapery commonly seen in paintings from this era) in space along a diagonal line, reaching behind him while chained to a rock on Mount Caucasus while and eagle consumes his liver. His body is nude and very muscular, the figure is contorted and foreshortened...

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