The famous paintings of people are a treasure trove of artistic creations from a variety of periods and cultures. Paintings of people capture the human form and expressions and have been the subject of countless masterpieces. Portraits of famous people are a symbol of fame and prestige for most cultures, though many famous paintings are of lesser-known individuals. Below is a list of 8 most famous paintings of people.
The Mona Lisa, also known as La Gioconda, is a portrait painting by Leonardo Da Vinci. It is a work of art that was painted between 1504 and 1519. The painting was commissioned by a wealthy silk merchant named Francesco del Giocondo, who wanted it painted for his new home. The painting has gained international fame because of its unusual composition. Its title is a pun on Lisa's married name, Giocondo. The name Mona Lisa is a fusion of the words “my lady” and “La Gioconda” (meaning jocund in Italian).
Girl with a Pearl Earring
This painting, one of Vermeer's most popular, was painted in 1665 and has since been known by several different names. It shows a young European woman in an exotic costume wearing a massive pearl earring. The painting has also been the subject of several literary adaptations. It is now permanently housed in the Mauritshuis museum in The Hague, Netherlands.
The painting was also popular in the Netherlands during the Dutch Golden Age. The Girl with a Pearl Earring shows a young woman in a very intimate setting, in a dark and shallow space. While the painting may be considered romantic, the subject is a mystery to modern eyes.
Napoleon Crossing the Alps
The resemblance between Napoleon and Charlemagne in Jacques-Louis David's painting Napoleon Crossing the Alps is striking. In it, the great conqueror stands in a landscape with carvings of his name and the names of other famous warmongers. However, this resemblance is not due to exactitude in traits. David's use of physiology and landscape is a means to convey the same message.
Despite the painting's realism, David managed to make the figure appear idealistic, with a conventionally attractive face. The painting also shows a number of military figures, including Bonaparte, Magnus, Hannibal, and his army. The paintings aim to convince the public of Napoleon's leadership and authority and to influence them. David's use of color theory and the realism it creates allows viewers to analyze the layers of the painting.
David began painting Napoleon in 1797 for the purpose of commemorating the peace treaty signed between France and Austria at Campo-Formio. The portrait, which is still incomplete, is displayed at the Louvre and later appears on a hundred-franc note. Interestingly, many paintings by David have been copied from the original, but few are considered genuine reproductions. However, David's painting still has an important place in the history of art.
One of Klimt's best-known works is The Kiss, which is considered one of his most famous pieces and one among famous paintings in the world. The Kiss is a huge oil on canvas that explores the themes of sexuality and eroticism. It shows two figures in close proximity, undergoing a passionate embrace. Klimt's work exemplifies the artist's enduring appeal. Despite its iconic status, it has remained a modest success for many years.
The Kiss by Klimt has a lot to offer art lovers who love to look at love and romanticism. Klimt often painted scenes with this theme, and his paintings exemplify a variety of styles. The Kiss embodies the “Golden Period” of the Austrian artist, while the couple's clothes reflect Klimt's appreciation of Byzantine art. The spiral patterns of the clothing recall decorative tendrils in Western art and Bronze Age art. In addition to the clothes and hair, the pose of the lovers evokes Vienna Art Nouveau.
The Kiss by Klimt has many layers of meaning. Though Klimt never painted portraits of himself, this painting is a general allegorical statement of love. Despite its age, it still retains an emotional impact and is a testament to Klimt's exceptional talent. The painting is surrounded by gold flakes, and the artist intended it to be a representation of love. The work has received worldwide attention and almost iconic status.
Portrait of Dora Maar by Pablo Picasso
A portrait by Pablo Picasso of the young woman known as Dora Maar is one of his most famous works. Although he never painted the woman smiling, she often appeared in his paintings. Her portraits have deep eyes and often depict tears. The artist is particularly fond of the work of Dora Maar, who had a hard life and was a model for the artist. This painting is a striking example of Picasso's work and is in many museum collections worldwide.
Whistler’s Mother by James McNeill Whistler
The famous painting, Whistler's Mother, is an iconic piece of American art. Many people have given it their own meaning. For some, it represents a mother's love and support for her son. For others, it symbolizes a mother's love and support for her son's dreams. And because it has become an iconic image, the US Post Office Department printed a stamp card with the picture and the slogan.
The painting has a compelling stillness, but its composition is largely minimalist and abstracted. Though the woman sits rigidly in her black mourning dress, she holds a handkerchief. It is an example of the artist's mastery of rectangles and composition. While the portrait appears a simple, understated pose, the painter succeeded in capturing the essence of the subject's personality.
In 1927, the painting was shown at the Luxembourg before it was accepted by the Louvre. It was compared to paintings by Rembrandt, Titian, and Velazquez. Its reception was such that it was eventually exhibited in the Louvre. This made Whistler one of the first American artists to have his painting accepted in the Louvre. But even after its success, Whistler was never able to submit another painting to the Louvre.
Portrait of Abraham Lincoln by George Henry Story
One of the most famous paintings of American presidents is the portrait of Abraham Lincoln by George Henry Story.
Story made his famous portrait of Abraham Lincoln from life sketches. It was the first portrait of the president with a beard. However, after the 1860s, American involvement in World War I caused him to repaint the image. Several copies of the Portrait of Abraham Lincoln by George Henry Story are on display in various museums and libraries, including the White House. This painting was also a favorite amongst collectors.
Las Meninas by Diego Velázquez
Las Meninas is the most famous painting by Velazquez, with over three meters in width and nearly 2.7 meters in height. The painting is so iconic that the Spanish government will not let it leave the country without it. As it represents Spain's great contribution to art history, the famous painting is not easily moved abroad. Its lasting allure is reflected in its popularity and remains one of the most popular paintings in the world.