Monday, January 30, 2012

Napoleon Bonaparte by Jacques-Louis David

'Bonaparte Crossing the Grand Saint-Bernard Pass' by Jacques-Louis David

It is a bold image, that bestows strength and power upon the subject. It shows a dynamic posture, which is enhanced by the flow of the cape. This is because the cape is completely parallel to the position of the horse. The composition contains three strong diagonal structures, the cape, the horse and the land. This enhances the height and posture of Bonaparte and is completed by his gesture that points upward. This image is a complete portrayal of power and victory. His men can be seen in the distance, they are small but not insignificant. Placed at the feet of the horse, this perspective enhances the power of Bonaparte by giving him the status of a giant. 

'Bonaparte Crossing the Grand Saint-Bernard Pass' (detail) by Jacques-Louis David

Both the eyes of Napoleon Bonaparte and the horse stare directly at the viewer. The expression on his face shows will and determination. This is then enhanced by the color red within the cloak, which we tend to associate with aggression. The influence of the color red is so strong that it can affect our judgment. it has been shown that referees, tend to subconsciously favor athletes who wear red. The video below explains.



click here to view the video on Youtube

'Bonaparte Crossing the Grand Saint-Bernard Pass' by Jacques-Louis David is an image of power and victory. If you wish to look at the image further on Google Art Project click here.