25 Jul 2015

Gauguin’s Nose

This is a little-known self-portrait of Paul Gauguin. The features seem to add up. That lantern jaw, signature moustache and the long, curling hair have been seen before. But, stop! What did he do to his nose? It's classical, Roman and as straight as a brush. It looks nothing like his true one....

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02 Dec 2014

How Portraiture Causes Blindness

Specialisation has crippled art history, blinding its practitioners to what is common. For over six years EPPH has been arguing that many portraits by major artists are fusions of the artist's facial features with the sitter's. They were never intended (by the artist, at least) as an accurate...

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03 Mar 2013

Gauguin Wrestles with Art

Gauguin's great painting of Jacob wrestling with the Angel is commonly known as Vision after the Sermon, perhaps to make sense of the women who were obviously not present in the Bible story. Two years ago I explained the scene as taking place in Gauguin's own mind as the painter, represented by...

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08 May 2012

Is Painting Art?

This website, EPPH, is founded on a few principles that bear repeating, especially for new users. One of the most important concerns art’s definition. What is art? We believe that drawing and painting are crafts, not arts. Almost any motivated student properly trained can draw or paint well....

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30 May 2011

Metamorphic Form

Craig Tracy, a painter and former illustrator, creates arresting images (left) and then shows us how he did it (right). Few art historians realize that great masters, far more creative obviously than Tracy (no offense intended), often use the same method but do not tell us. There are a few...

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23 Nov 2010

Art and Eckhart

“Knowledge of Meister Eckhart’s work is indispensable to the understanding of medieval art, even though he has been almost totally neglected by those who like to call themselves ‘historians of art.’”

So wrote the Egyptologist and scholar of mystery religions Christian Jacq on the opening page...

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10 Nov 2010

Gauguin’s Method

I was reading about Gauguin today and his own explanation of The Vision after the Sermon: Jacob Wrestling with the Angel. It struck me that if I was trying to explain this image I would say the same: that the figures in the foreground represent the artist imagining or “painting” the scene...

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19 Oct 2010

Wisdom in the Chilean Dark

Everyone has their own memorable moment in the story of the Chilean miners. Mine came after the first few of the buried men arrived on the surface. One declared in translation: “Underground, I was with God and the Devil. They fought each other, and God won.” I found it riveting.

Catholic and...

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The EPPH Blog features issues and commentary.